I’ve felt a gentle but deliberate nudging towards a particular question lately when fear climbs in and tries to nestle deep in the central sulcus. Fear always shows up as a big bully with hypertrophied muscles. His tactics are usually the same. He plays a movie of cost. He plays a movie of loss. He plays a movie that says “you’re better off without this” to keep me living contained. He plays the audio of the silent thoughts others are thinking. That movie replays on an endless loop…unless I press the “stop” button.
But here’s the kicker: pressing the stop button just returns me to a blank screen. Stare at it long enough, and I’ll get bored. I’ll stay living right where I am. Turning off fear is a good first step, but it has to be followed by other steps. That’s something that I’ve struggled with.
Iyanla Vanzant once said something along the lines of “Get a vision. A dream will keep you in. A vision will pull you out.”
God’s been showing me the importance of seeking His vision.
When I press the “stop” button, I’ve started asking myself this one key thing: “God, what does freedom from [this fear of _____] look like to you?” I want the picture he plays. He shows me some joy that’s unattainable when I live in fear. And don’t I know it through life already? That obedience’s cost is always gain.
God doesn’t want me to give up my people or my dreams. He wants to live in the tension. Ultimately, both will be better off for my doing so. The vision of that has started pulling me out. I don’t want to live a shadow-joy when I could have the real thing. And the real thing always requires dismantling of idols.
Sometimes battling a sin seems like a lost cause until we believe that we were made for more and have a vision of that more. We were made for deep relationship, shared joy, and kingdom work. We were made for overcoming grief through Christ. The space that was filled by fear flees when a vision of faith moves in. Ann Voskamp says it: “Worry is belief gone wrong, because you don’t believe that God will get it right. Peace is belief that exhales, because you believe God’s provision is everywhere- like air.”
It doesn’t mean that we won’t struggle with sin, depression, distraction, performance, approval, or addiction. But God didn’t make a single person who He didn’t intend to manifest His glory through in world-altering ways. We were created for more than just a struggle. Sometimes seeing and trusting a vision of that more is a good next step. I keep saying it back these days when temptation whispers or I feel a bit broken: “I was made for more.”
And we feel your Truth sinking in
This wasn’t about a one-time pursuit of us
This is a lifelong-wooing of us
Spirit of God moving to show a Father’s love for us
Because You created us individually
You rejoice over each personality
Created us to walk from glory to glory
And by grace, all becomes glory in His story
And we believe it
That we were made for more
We were made for more than that sin
More than that depression
More than distraction
More than performance
More than listening to lies
We were made for communion with the Son
So that thing that feels too big to ever be free of? Lets start circling it like Jericho. Lets borrow God’s vision. Lets declare that we were made for such a time and such events as this. Lets pray it crumbling to the ground. We were made for more than slavery to that sin, that thought pattern, that numbing, than wishing to be free of tension. I can see it.
Vision goes by another name: hope. I claim it for my own.