music monday: you make be brave by bethel music ft. amanda cook

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5:00 AM

I had the opportunity to go on the women's retreat for my church this weekend, my first time away since my kiddos entered the world. I had planned on bringing my little guy, since he is still nursing but God had other plans and I am grateful for the time apart and some quality time with my mama and other fabulous ladies and inspiring leaders and speakers. It is amazing how God always has something for everyone and is faithful to start a good work in each of us. The theme this year was fearless, based on Proverbs 31:25. After lots of praying and fasting the past few weeks, God has been renewing my mind in him and drawing my thoughts to him instead of the things that were weighing me down, one of which was fear. Who knew?

I did not think too much about it going in to it but God revealed to me little incites and slivers of fear that had crept in different aspects, one of which is writing. As I have said, allowing others to read the words that God has me sharing is not easy but I know that is what he is calling me to do.

Fear is one of those sneaky things that hides in the middle of something else and masquerades as other things, like doubt and what ifs and worry. It takes away a little bit of you before you knew it even crept in. It takes your joy. It holds you back and keeps you from a fulfilling life.

Fear intertwines with confusion. It coincides with normalcy and screams safety. Fear is hidden in the thoughts of taking chances and sides with not making mistakes.

So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. Isaiah 41:10

This verse from Isaiah is my favorite of the "do not fear verses." One that I go back to and God pops it in my head at the appropriate time. God tells us not to fear. This particular verse is regarding Israel's release from captivity, which had been caused by their disobedience. God is speaking of hope for the captives. They will be set free. He will set you free. He will help you. He will restore you and turn desert in to pools of water (41:18). It is such a beautiful picture of how God makes beauty from the ashes. He uses our fears and takes them to bring glory to him alone.

Perhaps you find yourself in fear because of a decision you made or an event that happened out of your control. Or a choice you do not want anyone to know about. Whatever the cause, I pray that you would allow God to take your fear and give you truth and a sound mind and show you how to give yourself grace.

Over and over again scripture says not to fear. We do not need to fear men (Matthew 10:28). Or what we will eat or drink or about our life (Matthew 6:25). God has it all in the palm of his hand.
I pray that God will reveal to you any fears that are holding you back and that you will be able to stand in front of them with God leading the way. Praying you will be set free from any lies or misconceptions and focus on the truth that God is for you. You are his. And you are beautiful.

And I have to share the theme song for the retreat, You Make Me Brave by Bethel Music. Another awesome Bethel song, one I had not heard before but is amazing. Have a listen.

You make me brave. No fear can hinder now the Love that made a way.
Here's to not being ashamed of your fears but finding power in knowing that God is your strength and will show you how to overcome them. Here's to being brave. 
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