I have always been what most people would consider an outgoing guy. I can go in and talk to people and joke and have fun. The truth is though that while I can do those things, it’s not really me. Going into a group of people and having to mingle petrifies me with anxiety and then take it another step further an have to speak to everyone and I get even more anxious. The biggest anxiety of all though is when I am charged with sharing a devotion or preaching a sermon. The pressure of making sure that not only am I communicating well, but also handling the truth of God’s Word properly very much overwhelms me.
Yet, I am in full time ministry where I have to do all those things that cause my anxiety. From 2005-middle of 2016 I was in a ministry where I may only have to speak in front of a group a handful of times a year. That all changed last year when I went full time with FCA. Since that time I have had to share in churches, civic organizations, schools, and lots of other places. In just a little over a year I have had more opportunities to speak than I have had in the 11 years prior.
All this is to say, I am so thankful that I have a God who encourages me and gives me strength to over come, or at least ignore the anxieties that attack me about speaking. Where once I had a sense of dread when someone asked me to speak, now I am open to it and sometime find myself excited for the opportunity. Don’t get me wrong, I’m still scared and worried, but too many times has God showed himself faithful for me to be held back by those feelings.
This Sunday, I will be speaking at a church that I have never spoken at before. I am blessed to have the opportunity to not only share about our ministry with FCA but to also share a message from God’s Word. The nerves and fears will come, but I have a great God who will give me strength and allow me to do all things through Him!