“Could it be fear?” he asked me.
I had spent the last thirty minutes sitting in one of those oversized leather chairs explaining how all the circumstances around were holding me back from moving forward with my dreams. The problem was timing, busyness, and other priorities I explained. I told how there’s no time, no creativity flowing, no money or resources available.
I felt justified in my immobility given my current circumstances. I figured this just wasn’t the season and maybe when situations are easier, the dreams will happen.
But his question that day caught me off guard. It implied that the reasons weren’t actually outside of me, which was way easier to pinpoint, but rather inside of me. Instead of circumstances against, maybe it was fear within.
“So just how pervasive is fear with your dreams?” he followed with.
Without giving my mind time to process, my words replied: “I think way more than I’ve realized.”
Because when it comes to our dreams, fear is right there waiting to keep us down and out.
It may come in different forms, as fear of rejection or failure. Maybe it is the fear of not being good enough, or even scarier, the fear of dreams coming true and carrying that weight of responsibility. Regardless, fear grips us by the illusion that we are paralyzed, overwhelmed, and unable to change circumstances around us.
That day I walked out of the meeting realizing fear tries to convince us of two things:
That we are victims.
Fear tells us we are powerless to our circumstances. It’s like wearing glasses with tweaked lenses that portray a world where we are incapable to move because of the oppressive forces all around. We’re stuck, fear says, so no use in trying because there’s no way out.
That there is only lack, never enough.
Fear makes us believe in the lack of our today. It highlights all that is given to those around us as proof that there isn’t enough. Comparison is a tool used to emphasize what others hold and what cannot be ours. It gets us to believe there is no use in trying because all good things have been given elsewhere.
Fear steals. It takes our truth and it takes our power. Why? Because if we knew the truth, we would be stirred to move. And if we believed the Spirit’s power within us, immobility wouldn’t be an option. So it aims to strip the truth from our identity and the power from our dreams so we will likely remain paralyzed. Frozen by fear. Overwhelmed by defeat. No idea how to move forward.
But there’s something else fear does:
It indicates the direction to head.
Instead of giving ear to fear’s lies, what if those words are an indicator of where to move? Instead of slamming up against another wall of fear and deciding to fall down and be done – what if we decided that was proof enough we are on the right track? Because the place where fear pressures is the place meant for advancement by the Spirit.
The easy road is to do what I did and become a perpetual explainer of the whys of the immobility. It’s easy to list excuses. But it is also costly – because it costs traction in this present season.
It’s possible to believe in your dreams without moving one inch closer to them because, ultimately, believing isn’t enough. The question is: do we have faith? We may believe in the dreams, but to have faith in them is to respond by movement. Because faith always requires our action.
The way to silence fear in our lives is to move out by faith, expecting that mountains will move, waters will part, and storms will calm.
How pervasive is fear in holding you back? Maybe it’s time to get your heart racing by taking a daring step towards finding your rhythm and movement again.