For the visual learners…

I am a visual learner and also a very. bad. artist.

I am dedicating this post to all the visual learners out there…that can see through bad artistry.

This is what happens when you get a Bachelor of Arts degree in Criminal Justice. Stick people. :-)

Yesterday, I studied Matthew 25:14-30. In the story, the first two dudes had faith and courageously invested. That is why the “artist” depicted them with smiles. Their returns were at least double. The third dude however, was afraid and hid. In the end, he had zip. zilch. nada. zero.

The reason I needed to share this is because I’ve been both hidden and paralyzed with fear. Oh, how I can relate to the third dude who told God in verse 25, I was afraid I might disappoint you, so I found a good hiding place…

Stepping away from fear and out of hiding has been a real trip. Each time I prepare a new talk…I hear the third dude speak to me, “Go, hide!” Each time I go deliver a talk to a group of women, I hear “Don’t share your story, hide!” Every blog post the third dude says, “No, don’t…stay hidden it’s safer and you’re less vulnerable”.

I can’t count the times that I’ve told God, “I am afraid to disappoint you Lord” while stepping out to talk, write, and just share with some friends along the way.

I still feel fear today. The difference from before to today has everything to do with something God told me through Joyce Meyer, (paraphrasing here), “It’s okay to feel fear. Just do it afraid.”

Just do it afraid.

Feeling this fear is not the problem. Allowing the fear to keep me stuck, or hidden and not using my talents (such as drawing stick people), is. :-)

The only way you and I can truly disappoint God is by doing nothing. I do fear the Lord in a serious way. I disappoint God by not using the talents (time, energy, gifts/talents, stuff, our story) that God has so generously given.

Thinking you don’t have a talent to share is like telling God that He made a mistake. Honey, He did not make a mistake with you or me.

He gave us what it takes to do what He called us to do.

I want to ask you to do something really crazy today. Share a time when you stepped through fear and did something afraid. Don’t hide because other need to be encouraged! What were the results? My heart is to encourage others today to step out! And, if you’d like to email me a stick figure drawing to steph@encouragedinheart.org – I may just post them here and on the EIH Facebook page!

For my friends that are currently feeling afraid about something God’s asking, I want you to put a name to that fear that’s been asking you to stay hidden and release it (share it) by putting the first initial of your name, and leave a comment below. I’ll pray for you by initial – God sure knows who the initial is and I ask my fellow EIH’ers to lift one another up in prayer too.

Let’s invest and change the world for Christ one investment opportunity, or stick person, at a time. :-)

That’s WASSUP? this Wednesday!

Just in case you’d like to read the story I pathetically drew above, I cut and pasted it below. :-)

Matthew 25:14-30 The Message (MSG) – The Story About Investment

14-18″It’s also like a man going off on an extended trip. He called his servants together and delegated responsibilities. To one he gave five thousand dollars, to another two thousand, to a third one thousand, depending on their abilities. Then he left. Right off, the first servant went to work and doubled his master’s investment. The second did the same. But the man with the single thousand dug a hole and carefully buried his master’s money.

19-21″After a long absence, the master of those three servants came back and settled up with them. The one given five thousand dollars showed him how he had doubled his investment. His master commended him: ‘Good work! You did your job well. From now on be my partner.’

22-23″The servant with the two thousand showed how he also had doubled his master’s investment. His master commended him: ‘Good work! You did your job well. From now on be my partner.’

24-25″The servant given one thousand said, ‘Master, I know you have high standards and hate careless ways, that you demand the best and make no allowances for error. I was afraid I might disappoint you, so I found a good hiding place and secured your money. Here it is, safe and sound down to the last cent.’

26-27″The master was furious. ‘That’s a terrible way to live! It’s criminal to live cautiously like that! If you knew I was after the best, why did you do less than the least? The least you could have done would have been to invest the sum with the bankers, where at least I would have gotten a little interest.

28-30″‘Take the thousand and give it to the one who risked the most. And get rid of this “play-it-safe” who won’t go out on a limb. Throw him out into utter darkness.’

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