Fear is an emotion that can alter the way you do things. We all need to fear certain things, such as being burnt by fire or if someone is chasing us with a chainsaw. Sorry, I watched Texas Chainsaw Massacre as a teenager, and that movie still haunts me. We should have a healthy respect for things that strike fear in our hearts.
When I fear something, I try to stay as far away from the issue as possible. I have a fear of flying, so when it is possible, I would rather drive ten hours than fly for three. My anxiety keeps me from flying, and it can cost me a lot of precious time.
Sometimes, we are afraid of the unknown. We worry because we don’t know how someone will react to a situation, so we try to keep the problem hidden from them. You might not be “afraid”; instead, you don’t want to disappoint them with your issue.
When the kids were young, they would hide a broken object, trying to keep me from finding out they had broken it. They weren’t afraid of me, but they knew I would be disappointed, and they might get punished for disobeying.
I’m guilty of this myself, especially when putting a scratch or ding on the car. We had an oversized mailbox at the end of our driveway, which could hold a lot of mail. I would stop every day as I left to go to work, pull up to the mailbox, and grab the mail. One day, Joe was with me and said, “you should get out of the car to go to the mailbox.” At that time, I couldn’t see the value in his comment, so I continued to get the mail “my way.”
One day, I was in Joe’s truck instead of my car. As I pulled out of the driveway, I stopped at the mailbox, rolled down the window, and reached to open the box. As I pulled on the lip of the mailbox, a giant spider crawled out from under it and scared me. I am terrified of spiders that I can see, but one hidden like that scared me. So, I jumped back and let go of the mailbox lid.
Our mailbox was oversized, and the door was probably about 10 “-12″ long. As I let go of the door, it started to fall and hit the side of Joe’s truck, leaving a 2” scratch. I about died because I knew that Joe would be mad, especially since he had told me that I shouldn’t open the mailbox that way.
I pulled up to the house and ran in to see If I could find a magic marker to hide the damage, hopefully. It was a futile attempt because it was right at the door handle, and there was no way he would miss the scratch. I worried and fretted all day long, and when I saw him pull into the driveway, I took a big gulp and headed out to face the music.
I guess he could see the worry on my face because he asked what was up. I took him to the door, and the whole story came tumbling out of my mouth. I waited for the explosion, but instead, he said, “no big deal, we’ll get it fixed.” What?!? I told him I had worried he would be disappointed because I hadn’t listened to his instructions. Then he said, “we can’t change the past, but did you learn a lesson?”
To this day, at least five years ago, I’ve never pulled up to the mailbox again. I always get out of my car, walk to the mailbox, look under the lip of the door, and then get the mail. I DID learn my lesson, and I now try to look behind the reason for anyone’s suggestions.
Even though I wasn’t “fearful” of Joe, I hated to disappoint him. I’m sure Adam and Eve felt the same after they ate the forbidden fruit from the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil.
15 The Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it. 16 And the Lord God commanded the man, “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; 17 but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will certainly die.”
Adam and Eve might have been afraid since the Lord said, “you will certainly die.” I wonder if they even knew what it meant to die. After the serpent lied to Eve, she ate from the fruit and gave some to Adam, who ate it also.
4 “You will not certainly die,” the serpent said to the woman. 5 “For God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” 6 When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it. 7 Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they realized they were naked; so they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves.
Adam and Eve did what my kids and I did; they tried to hide what they had done. You might hide things from your parents, spouse, or friends, but the Lord knows all, and there is no hiding from Him.
8 Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the Lord God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the Lord God among the trees of the garden. 9 But the Lord God called to the man, “Where are you?”
Adam and Eve tried to separate themselves from God by hiding. They probably knew He would not be happy with them, and they were hoping that He wouldn’t notice what they had done. When we mess up, we don’t want to draw attention to our actions, so we will distance ourselves from the person we have offended. God already knew what Adam and Eve had done, but did you notice that He gave them a chance to confess?
We are bound to disappoint people, even those we love and who love us. I mess up (sin) all the time, but I never want to put distance between myself and the Lord. I don’t want Him calling out to me, “where are you?” When I mess up, I want to go to my Good, Good Father and confess what I’ve done. Like my mailbox story, I hope I learn something from my mistakes and don’t repeat them. I am so thankful for the Lord’s mercy and grace!
To God Goes The Glory!
Have A Blessed Day!