If you have ever received an email from me, you might have noticed this quote below my signature: "Heaven's not beyond the clouds; it's just beyond the fear." I've had it as part of my email signature for easily 15 or 16 years. It's actually a line from an old Garth Brooks' song called Belleau Wood. While the song chronicles something that happened during World War I, this line has always stood out to me because fear is such a palpable emotion in many of our lives.
I'm not often described as a fearful person. My extroverted, take-charge personality often overrides my fear, at least on the surface. People look to me as a leader and it's easier to jump in and take over than to sit and be fearful about what might happen next. But honestly, fear has often been that bully that lived in the background, taunting me, even when I was able to do things that seemed courageous, if not fearless.
You see, that's the thing about fear. For some people fear is big and bad and paralyzing. But for the majority of us, fear is just a loud buzz in the back of our heads. We can't stop it. We can't shut it down. It's hard to hear or talk over it. After all, there are people depending on us. There are things we have to do. There are places we must go. We have just enough tenacity to keep moving forward, even when the buzzing gets louder and louder. So we stuff it down, ignore it, talk over it, and keeping on moving, all while feeling the stinging nettles of fear piercing our hearts and minds. What looks courageous, brave, and fearless on the outside is just an internal fortitude that won't let us back down.
I've often thought I was just too stubborn to let fear win.
But as I lean in to listen, I begin to hear another sound above the fear-buzzing. It's faint at first but the harder I listen, the louder it gets. The louder it gets, the quieter the fear becomes. And I can begin to see beyond it.
When I'm fearful in relationship, He reminds me of His love.
Perfect love casts out fear.I John 4:18
While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.Romans 6:8
Seek first his kingdom and righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.Matthew 6:33
And if I look closely enough and dare fear to cloud my vision, I might just get a glimpse of heaven.
What fears has God's word relieved for you?
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