I was about 15 years old when my dad offered to give me a $1 bill to lay down across the floor of a pizza place in Chesapeake City for 1 minute, Of course I did it! I didn’t do it for the dollar though, it was the opportunity to prove to the whole world, or at least the five people in the restaurant, that Shane Lankford wasn’t scared of anything!
It’s ironic in my attempt to demonstrate my lack of fear I almost scared myself to death. Thanks Dad!!! I did walk away with two things. First was the dollar bill, and it didn’t last long. The second, I still have with me this day. It is the understanding that fear can be a paralyzing emotion. Fear made it hard to lay down on that floor, and as insane as it sounds, fear made it hard to get back up off the floor once I had laid there for a while.
Fear causes paralysis!
This may surprise you, but one of my most crippling fears today is telling people about Jesus. You may be thinking…Shane you are a pastor! This is what you’ve given your life to do! Although you would be correct in your analysis, for some strange reason it doesn’t make it any easier.
I am not talking about a sermon on Sunday morning in a private place where the sunlight is breaking beautifully through the stained glass, providing warmth to people on padded pews. I’m talking about inviting the waitress at the pizza place to church, or telling my neighbor about Jesus. No matter how many times I do it, it does not seem to get any easier.
That sounds terrible, but maybe the best part about being a witness, is realizing that my heart may be bursting out of my chest, and my hands may be shaking uncontrollably, but I believe the God I’m about to represent is standing right beside me!
In Acts 4:29 the disciples, after being persecuted and threatened prayed that God would give them the boldness to continue speaking the Word! That Is my prayer for us. I’m praying in a world riddled with fear, that God would give His servants a boldness to lift up the name that is above every name!
Invite somebody to Church!
Tell somebody about Jesus!
You Can Do This Through Christ!
After all, it’s not like God is asking us to lay down on the floor of a public restaurant!!!