Have you ever dreamed of having Big Faith?
I grew up hearing the stories of the Bible, I often dreamed of playing the role of the character with the Big Faith. I was David slaying Goliath with a tiny stone. I was Daniel entering a den of hungry lions and coming out unscathed. I was Abednego walking in the furnace with my three comrades and exiting without even smelling of smoke.
Did you ever dream of playing the role of the one with the Big Faith? What did you do when your moment came? When you were faced with the opportunity to chose your faith over fear. Did you choose faith and rise above that threatening mountain facing you? Did you choose fear and run from that scary giant? Maybe it wasn't a giant or a mountain, perhaps it was a fork in the road. One choice was the smooth and straight path, the other full of twists and turns....which path did you choose?
I believe all things happen for a reason. I believe we make no mistakes. I didn't always believe these things. I used to think everything was happening to me and that I must have made some mistake and caused things to happen in such a manner. I used to live in fear. Fear used to be my closest companion. I was afraid to upset those that I loved. I was afraid of disappointing my understanding of God. I was afraid of being hurt...again. I was afraid of being abandoned.... again. I was afraid of being rejected...again. I was afraid of failure. I was afraid of success. I was afraid of life.
I learned fear at a very young age. In fact, fear and faith touched my life before I drew my first breath. During the latter part of my mom's pregnancy with me, my dad found himself involved in a serious accident. My mother's intense anger and fear of the unknown caused her to have sudden excruciating pain in her abdomen. She told me, "I just knew I was beginning to miscarry you. I prayed that God would save you. The pain went away and I knew God had chosen life for you". I was born healthy....and into a world of fear and faith.
As a young child I wasn't consciously aware of the duality of fear and faith. I struggled with the concept of faith. I heard about a God that loved me so much that He sent His Son to die for my wickedness....yet I couldn't understand what was wicked about me. I was taught to fear the God that loved me. I began to associate fear with love. They must be the same, my young mind concluded. If I loved God, I should fear Him. If I loved my parents, I should fear them. To love meant to cower, play small, to neglect my feelings, to neglect my pain. The message I received, that so many of us do, was that being loved....would cost me. That love hurts. Of course, it was never the intent of my parents to teach me love in this respect. They learned it from their parents, who learned it from their parents....."sins of the father". It wasn't just my immediate family either. This was the clear message I got from my bigger family as well....humanity. Society taught me that to be loved I had to be "less than". I had to "play small". Hide my authentic self and put others needs before my own.
How many of my beautiful sisters learned this with me?
It was a natural progression for me to leave the parents I loved....ie feared and embrace a man that I loved...ie feared. I built my world on that which I was taught as a young person. When that world, built on a foundation of fear, began to fall apart...I was given the terrifying opportunity to step into the role of the character with the Big Faith. The path of my life came to a fork. One path was familiar, the other unknown. The familiar was to stay in fear, trapped in an abusive marriage. A relationship based on control and fear, not equality and respect. I felt worthless, wretched, and insignificant and I was treated in such a manner.
I could choose faith and step down the path unknown where all my fears and uncertainties would be met head on. Am I worthy? Am I lovable? Am I significant? Am I beautiful? With all the courage I could muster, I chose the path of faith. I chose to become my own heroine. I chose to believe that God loved me.... just as I was. My journey of faith began when I chose to love myself enough to end the marriage that had slowly eroded my physical self, me emotional self, and my spiritual self to the point that only a whisper of God's original creation was left. After I took the first step, God met me on that scary path, and we have been on the most amazing journey ever since. I know with all that I am, that I am living the life I was created to live....and it feels amazing.
So, if you have dreamed about playing the role of the character with Big Faith, your opportunity will come. It will likely come as the most frightening thing you can imagine....when it comes, give yourself space to breathe. Faith is all about facing the unknown and trusting that everything works out for your good. You have everything you need inside of you to walk this path.
Call upon your faith and choose to be your won heroine.