It has been a bit since I have blogged. For one reason, we are stateside and I have been busy visiting, speaking, and waiting for Doug to join us. I am happy to announce that the LawsonTribe4 is back together and as much as we miss our new home, it is great to visit the beauty of South Carolina again and see our friends and family. The hardest thing about this venture back over the pond is that we now have new family and friends that we also hate to leave. Music to my ears and tears to my eyes was when, within the first week of being back in the states, both of my children had said at different times that they missed Africa. Of course they loved seeing family and friends, but it warmed my heart that they did not just “have” to go back because Doug and I made a decision to follow, but they wanted to go back because they loved it there too! It was just a great God kiss for me in that moment of wondering what the visit to the states would be like.
I write all of that to say this: What is it that you are fearing today? As I have been helping Doug prepare for a sermon that he will preach tomorrow God has been whispering to me “Fear Not.” I read His message tonight (His being capitalized on purpose) and I remembered back to the first sermon Doug preached, which was almost a year ago. I remember how nervous he was, how fearful even, because this was so far out of his comfort zone. We thought moving to Africa was already pretty far out of the comfort zone and now preaching. For those who know Doug well, you know that he is a calm person who likes being in the background, not the center stage kinda guy. 🙂 I think tonight, of what I remember then, to what I have read now and just know without a shadow of a doubt that God is all over us being exactly where we are. It really matters not if it changes anyone else, though I know it has and pray it will continue to, what matters is that it has changed us. The “Fear Not” that God whispers to our hearts has changed us forever. It is still changing us and changing our kids. Those are life changing words from a Father that knows every fear that Satan puts before you. He knew that we would fear going to Africa, He knew that we would fear serving as a pastor and a women’s leader. He knew that this year would be full of trials and “fears.” He knew that the boys would have some hard days, He knew that life would throw many curve balls, but He also knew that He had conquered that for us as soon as we said “yes, we will go.”
Praise God that He conquered that fear for us. He conquered death, hell, and the grave, all for you and all for me, yet in our weakness we still tremble in fear over so many things. I feared coming back to the states for what it would be like again and how overwhelming it may be for all of us, especially the boys. I feared that relationships we had all made in Uganda would somehow not be the same when we returned and that friendships here in the USA would be different as we had been gone over a year. I had all sorts of fears (I think we all did) that Satan had put before us and we let them grow…..at least I did somewhat. And all the while, God is preparing this sermon in my husbands soul to Fear not. God is so good. He is bringing back full circle that He is victor and in Him I have NO FEAR! He has defeated my fear and He can defeat yours too, if you let Him.
So I leave you with the same pondering thought that I have been left with: What and why am I still fearing? Why do we let Satan lie to us about anything when we know we serve the Victor. We are more than conquerors through Christ. We serve a mighty God who is able to do immeasurably more than we could ever imagine if we would just “Fear Not.” God took my fears this past year and He alone has turned them into His promises. He has filled every fear with a promise from His word as I have turned them over to Him. Tomorrow, my husband, will stand before a much different congregation. For one, it will be enclosed by walls. There will be no chickens sharing the pulpit with him and probably not as many shouts of Joy and “yee yee yees” as He would usually get. The floors will be carpeted and there will be air conditioning (or heat at the rate we are going). Everyone will most likely be seated properly and you will not smell the smoke from the fire outside from someone cooking or hear the kids shouting and playing outside. We will not hear the drums or the shakers, and the songs will all be in English. Nobody is likely gonna get up and dance and probably nobody will ask us for money at the end. All of this and more put us back out of our “now comfort zone” and again God whispers “Fear Not.” My prayer tonight is not just for my husband, and not just for me and my boys, but it is for all of those in Fear. There is a Power above all Powers, there is a Name above all Names, there is an Almighty God that can, that already has Won the battle over whatever it is that we fear. His name is Jesus. From one humbled fearful soul to another, let’s declare His name above our fears. Are you ready?