Raise your hand if you have lots of projects started but unfinished. I’m an idea person. I’ve got lots of them—and they’re really good (if I do say so myself). But I’m not a very good project finisher. There are always things that seem more important (like organizing drawers I haven’t looked in for months, cleaning baseboards, etc), but if I’m really honest, it’s not the other things that take precedence, it’s fear that keeps me from finishing.
A few weeks ago my book, the Joy Bringer Challenge, was released into the world. It was a seven-year labor of love, and every deadline felt like a fight. I thought, why? I knew I was called to write it. I knew the Lord was in it. I knew that people needed to read it. So why the struggle? What’s the deal?
I don’t really have the answer, but I do know that our fear and avoidance are not a surprise to the Lord. One of my favorite joy verses is,
“Be strong and courageous, and do the work.”
1 Chronicles 28:20
David was encouraging his son Solomon to finish the building of the temple. The dream was David’s, but The Lord saw fit that Solomon be the one to bring it to fruition. God had every intention of providing everything that was needed, but nevertheless, David knew his son needed to be encouraged to stick to it.
Be strong and courageous.
There will be opposition.
There will be challenges.
But do the work.
God will provide.
Do. The. Work.
Self-discipline is a fruit of the spirit. The presence of the Holy Spirit allows us to tap into a strength that’s beyond us to bring the good work of the Lord to completion. God provides on his end, we do the work necessary on ours.
We are not a surprise to the Lord. He sees us—right through to the core. We cannot hide from his love or his goodness. It’s not worth pretending that we’re not afraid, but rather we’d do better to invite the Lord into the fear to do what