To Live in Fear, is Not to Live at All / by Elmer Canas

(Original Post December 2015)

For almost 20 years of my life, I’ve had the privilege of declaring the goodness of God through song and sharing about the freedom that is found in Jesus Christ. I find myself shy of 34 years of age, and I'm finally admitting that I am afraid. I am afraid of confronting certain issues that I’ve left untouched for decades. We all have things deep within our skin that over the years become a thorn on our side. One moment we feel like we can conquer the world, and at an instant we feel incapable of even functioning within our gifts. We can easily solve the problems of the world around us, yet are terrified to see the very issues that have been buried beneath our feet.

In the gospel of Luke, Jesus says, “for all that is secret will eventually be brought into the open, and everything that is concealed will be brought to light and made known to all.” (Luke 8:17-NIV) Scriptures as such tend to cause fear to those hiding things from others. When we try to live a life that is not real and do everything in our power to put up facades, this scriptures puts the fear of God in us. But then there are the hidden things that we choose to keep hidden not because we’ve done a wrong, but because we feel unworthy. We fall into the trap of comparing ourselves to others. We compare families, success, wealth, marriages, accomplishments, ministries, etc. We slowly back our selves into a corner where we are met with the decision of giving up on our dreams and calling or taking a huge risk. Perception is irrelevant. By saying “huge risk”, most of the time it implies that your ego or pride will be affected by your decision. We think that the world will end and that society as we know it will parish. In all honesty, we hurt ourselves and those that we love; we hurt our generation, when we choose to give up on our dreams because of fear.

What would be different in your life if the things you fear the most were not there? On my desk I have a picture frame that has a quote that reminds me daily not to conform to one way of viewing my outcomes. It says, “if you keep doing what you’re doing, you keep getting what you’re getting.” In other words, if you don’t change anything today, you can’t expect change at all. How many of us live lives in limbo, just waiting for things to come to us. Waiting for our big break. Expecting the world to rotate around us, as if we were the center of the universe. If that is you, I don’t blame you. It’s so easy to find ourselves in those situations. But most of the time we find ourselves in such spots because we are afraid.

Many have kept reading this post waiting to read some crazy dirty little secret that I’ve kept hidden for decades. My past isn’t filled with stories of drugs, violence, alcohol and sex. But it is filled with seasons of disobedience and lack of faith. Regardless of what we’ve walked through in life, we can all relate with the urge to give up on life, on family, friends, work, ministry, etc. But if I can encourage you my friend, stand on the word of God. "For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.” (2 Timothy 1:7-NLT)

Can you imagine what would happen if we would all take a risk and step into the purpose God has created us for? Can you imagine doing life or serving in a ministry where everybody that surrounds you is totally committed, passionate and willing to lay it all on the line for one cause, one purpose? Can you fathom a generation that rises up understanding their true identity in Christ and not being distracted by false fears created by the culture of today’s entertainment industry? That would be one dangerous crowd to be around.

My wife and I have learned to stand on the promises of God. Even though we've faced trying times, we've never been alone. God always stands true to His word. Step out in faith. Do not fear. Do not hesitate to pursue your dreams. Step into your purpose.