Boating on the ocean is fascinating. The captain sets a compass heading in the direction he wants to go. He locks in that heading on the autopilot, and then the boat takes off in that direction; so far so good. It gets interesting when the craft hits a large wave or a series of waves. The autopilot does not allow the external action to alter its course. It keeps its original decision in place, heads straight for the goal, and then goes through the wave. There is a splash, lots of rocking and spraying, and an immediate correction by the autopilot if the ship is knocked off course in any way. When I say immediate, I mean immediate. The autopilot does not allow the ship to get swayed off course even momentarily when it hits a bump in the water.Beware of the fear of men... Click To Tweet
Most people do not operate like this. They know their proverbial ship is heading in the right direction, but they look over to see someone else’s reaction to their decision. The other person’s decision becomes like a mighty wave that looms larger and larger until it appears even bigger and bigger than their decisions, goals, and values that drove the initial decision. So the person changes their course. They adjust, but now they have lost their heading. They have avoided crashing into the wave and getting soaked by the spray, but now they are off course. Well, not entirely off course, but rather they’re on someone else’s course. They have kept someone else happy, but they have lost their way. As a result, they’ll never get where they initially wanted to go because there’ll always be another wave. But, if they hadn’t been afraid of getting a little wet or plowing through bumpy water, they would have soon been well on their way. The bump would have been well behind them, and the sea would have eventually smoothed out and returned to calm. What you decide to do, and how someone responds to your decision are not, and should not be related. The difference is like having a plant in your backyard that’s dropping because of a nutrient deficiency. You can keep the plant in the sun, you can water it, and protect it from insects, but the plant will not flourish if the nutrient deficiency is not resolved. The real problem must be addressed.
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Joshua 1:7-9 (NKJV)
Only be strong and very courageous, that you may observe to do according to all the law which Moses My servant commanded you; do not turn from it to the right hand or to the left, that you may prosper wherever you go. This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success. Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”
Proverbs 29:25 (NKJV)
The fear of man brings a snare, But whoever trusts in the Lord shall be safe.
Hebrews 12:1-2 (NKJV)
Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.