I’m not afraid of water, I’m afraid of not being able to touch the bottom. I’m afraid of losing control. The only thing I can attribute this fear too is this one time my twin and I were playing in the kiddy pool on a hot southern summer day and my sister fell on my back making it so I couldn’t get up. I wasn’t in any danger of drowning mom was right there and she was only there for a few seconds. I really never noticed it until this summer when my family went to the lake. We moved to the deeper part so we wouldn’t disturb the younger swimmers in the shallows. Suddenly my foot slipped off the rock and I was distinctly aware that I could no longer touch the bottom.
Quickly on its heels clawed panic, all around me, people were having fun swimming, diving, splashing and there I was afraid of not being able to touch the bottom and keep my head above water. Pretty silly huh? I don’t remember ever feeling like this before, I’ve been in friends pools and ours hundreds of times and it never bothered me. But a few years ago Grandma Cottage passed away and just before that our two foster kids left our care along with the passing of a very dear dog. That year I struggled with feeling like everything was out of control- I think that’s really where my sudden fear of not touching the bottom stems from. The world was spinning out of control and for some reason, I decided I could control it, I could make the chaos stop. But it was all an illusion, kind of like how standing on the rock meant safety. I could paste on a smile and fake that I was having fun from my safe little perch while the others stepped off.
See I was never really in control, I was kidding myself the same way I was kidding myself that I could have fun watching from where I thought was safe. It wasn’t until I decided I wasn’t going to be afraid, that I was never meant to control it and stepped off that rock and let go, trusting God to handle this out of control chaos called life, trusted that I, in fact, could swim (I have pictures to prove I had lessons) that I was able to have a good time. Sure there were moments that I desperately wanted to thrash back to my rock, and in truth, all I had to do was reach out and grab the buoy and I would be safe. But there was something freeing about letting go, refusing to be afraid and trusting that He has the answers.
I will be your God throughout your lifetime--until your hair is white with age. I made you, and I will care for you. I will carry you along and save you. Isaiah 46:4
It’s hard not to reach for that buoy- spring back for that unseen rock of my safety, to rip the reigns back out of God’s hand. Instinct tells you to lunge for it, your heart pounds in your chest, step back onto the rock, your fingers burn to grab that buoy to ensure your head doesn’t slip beneath the water- but maybe that’s just where God wants you, maybe letting go and hanging on to him is the lesson your supposed to learn.
In the water you can trust only one thing, your ability to swim, in life, we can only trust one thing Him. In the water our arms may fail us, he will never fail us. He is standing there, ready to take the fear holding you on your man made rock. Keeping you from diving into the water of your destiny, shackled by what others may think, or that you aren’t good enough.
The truth is he’s put that water in front of you to prove that it isn’t impassable; he’s assigned that mountain to you to prove that it can be moved. You hold the key to your shackles, give it to him, lay it down at his feet and dive into the water trusting Him to catch you. He’ll be there. He will never leave you, his plan may not be yours- keep trusting. Even when the waves roll over your head, lean into him and let him take you deeper.
Are you struggling with fear? Maybe you’re like me and it’s the fear of losing control, or maybe it’s something else, check out Kellie Balarie’s book Fear Fighting and let's start a new chapter of our lives fear free. This is a wonderful book, that will change your life! Kellie shares about how she overcame her fears and encourages you to do the same and rise up and be the woman he wants you to be.
So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you... Isaiah 41:10
Being afraid takes up way too much time and energy. Time that we could be using to shine His light to a dark world that we could be using to invest in our families and making memories that will last a lifetime. Time we could be reaching out to our community or a hurting friend or fulfilling the mission He has laid on our heart. Let’s kiss fear goodbye together and open a fresh page, are you with me? Then let’s make a splash! Let's dive off of our rock leaving behind our illusion of control and let's find peace in Him. Let's let Him revive our hearts that were once desert wastelands and make them beautiful places once more.
Related Article: Revive Our Hearts In This Desert Place
Break the door from your self-made cage, your rock above the waves and embrace His plan. And when fear comes creeping back in again look to Him. Don't live with regrets, dragging around the extra baggage to hold your chains. Drop them at the cross, let them clank to the ground, nail that fears to the cross and follow Him.
Even the wilderness and desert will be glad in those days. The wasteland will rejoice and blossom with spring crocuses. Yes, there will be an abundance of flowers and singing and joy! The deserts will become as green as the mountains of Lebanon, as lovely as Mount Carmel or the plain of Sharon. There the Lord will display his glory, the splendor of our God. Isaiah 35: 1-2
Related Article: Fear Fighting: Are You A People Pleaser?
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