The Fear of a New Direction

 Which way should I go?
When I was a young boy in Orlando, we would build forts in the woods beyond our home.  Of course, if you were part of the gang, you knew the pitfalls and traps we laid out for those who would dare trespass into our lair.  We had sticker bushes tied back so if you walked down the path and tripped the string, you got brushed with sharp points.  We dug holes and filled them with the stuff in the backyard if you owned a dog (no further picture needs to be shown) and sharp sticks in them as well.  It is amazing I grew up to be a minister!  However, if you knew the path, these would be no problem. We know the stories of men who would rather drive around for hours instead of stopping and asking for directions.  We also know the joke that heaven will have fewer men than women because most men would not stop and ask directions to heaven.  I even argue with my GPS on the dash of my car, resisting its instructions and tempted to toss it out the window.
Our plans meet headlong into reality
We all have expectations and plans for how we expect our life to go.  We plan our weddings, college, and a career spanning decades with the plan to retire to sunny Florida.  But things sometimes get in the way.  Children, sickness, financial woes, and business failures can cause us to have to re-direct our plans and courses.
In his heart a man plans his course, but the LORD determines his steps.  Proverbs 16:9 NIV

God has a greater purpose and if we trust him and not fear his decisions we might find ourselves doing things which would seem impossible.  My goal from college was to complete graduate school and work to earn the designation of CHA or certified hotel administrator.  I would travel the world and manage some great hotels.  And then God showed up one year after college and I knew I needed to be doing something for him.

The fear of God changing my plans kept me arguing with him for three years.  In four weeks I will have the chance to do something I never thought possible–pray before the West Virginia Senate.  Fear has a way of keeping us from great opportunities.  Heroism is not about extraordinary men and women doing heroic things but ordinary men and women doing their best in the face of great obstacles.

Many are the plans in a man’s heart, but it is the LORD’s purpose that prevails.
Proverbs 19:21 NIV
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