2. I Am NOT Adventurous
I admire people who are, but I prefer familiar surroundings. I’m a timid, “stick-in-the-mud” sort, fearful of approaching strange situations or being in crowds of people.
But I actually do like meeting new people; in situations such as huge conventions or strange churches once I can separate the individuals from the “teeming masses” I usually overcome my fear and have some great conversations. My husband may have to drag me there, but once I get settled and start visiting one-on-one, I’m always glad we came.
Unfortunately the devil has used my fears to keep me from being obedient to the Lord. At times I’ve felt a nudge to go talk to someone, in a shopping mall or on the street, someone that looked very unhappy. But a persistent little nag starts in my ear, playing on my fears. “How will they react? They’ll get very angry and tell you to mind your own business. Don’t do it!”
I believe God is merciful and forgives our weaknesses when we’re sorry; but disobedience IS a sin. We can’t just pass it off as ‘my personality’ and think God will understand. Thanks be! we can repent and be washed clean again, yet I know, every time I think back on those incidents, that I was not obedient and lost a battle for the Lord and over my fear.
Remember Peg Leg in the cartoon series BC? He was at times a poet and wrote these few lines that have stuck with me:
“Because of protocol, a life is lost, because someone didn’t talk to someone;
because of protocol no line is crossed and a law that should be don’t become one.
When a voice in your ear speaks of faith, not of fear, and bids you to go be a doer,
give heed to the voice that makes LOVE your first choice;
and throw protocol down the sewer.”
As to new situations:
Some years back I accompanied my daughter to a teacher’s preparation class in Mississippi. On the day of our departure for home again she was antsy. “Hurry up, Mom. We HAVE to get to Tennessee before dark.”
We’d made arrangements to stay overnight with the Shrocks, a church family near Monterrey, and we weren’t sure how to find their place. But this and that (and probably me ☺) delayed us so that we did arrive after dark.
Michelle had been to this congregation one other time on a trip so she knew what we were facing; I was blissfully ignorant until we started bouncing up a very rutted mountain road in the darkness, quite lost in the hills of Tennessee!
Not long ago I wrote a poem to tell this tale. I’ll post that tomorrow.