Christianity, Life, Moving Forward

Leap of Fear?

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No, no my friend it is not a leap of fear but it is a leap of faith that is being required of you. More than three times God told Joshua to be strong and courageous. When God begins to elevate you for an assignment, He will be sure to affirm you with the words that will carry you through.Β Joshua carried the words, “be strong and courageous”Β from His Father into his next challenging assignment.

Hear me when I say this: What’s next for you will require you to depend on God and not your emotions. What’s next for you will require you to call out your fears. I mean to write them down, to figure out why these fears are there and once these fears have been identified, God is going to ask you to do something with them. Are you ready? I am!

Fear, I have learned is nothing more than a fabricated emotion that becomes easy to believe.

Is fear real? Yes.

Can fear be conquered? Yes.

Our fears should push us and lead us to become more confident. Each time fear has entered my life and attempted to take control of my mind, I have allowed myself to get away with God and analyze why fear is there and where the fear is coming from.

Joshua, when he was chosen to take over for Moses, who was no longer around, fear was soon to enter. Joshua, being called to step into a new role, has a normal human response; that is to wonder if he could be the person for the job.

Here is what I’ve leaned about Joshua’s transition:Β The transition came so fast that he didn’t have much time to live in fear and this is what I want to point out for you and I to understand…

What God is requiring of you in this season of life cannot be taken up by allowing yourself to remain in fear.

Fear is an enemy that wants to stop you from walking into your God given potential. Fear is simply: False. Evidence. Appearing. Real. What I’ve learned about fear is this: whatever perspective you have toward the fear in your life, is usually what you and I will believe. If I believe I cannot accomplish something because of fear, then I am going to make decisions based off of my belief system. You see what I’m saying?

Questions for you to wrestle with:

  • What lie(s) are you believing?
  • Can you name your fears?
  • Do you see why these fears are there?
  • When will you take your leap of faith to overcome your fears?

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people will not feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It is not just in some of us; it is in everyone and as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give others permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.” – Marianne Williamson

P. S. What are some fears you had to overcome and how did you overcome these fears? Lets help each other out by sharing and encouraging one another!

P. S. S. Punch fear in the face! It has to go now!

 

 

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Christianity, Life, Moving Forward

You Have To Believe In Yourself

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The lack of self confidence, the pressure to perform at a high level, life beating you up, all of this can make it extremely hard to have a strong belief system. I am here today to say, it is time for a shift in our lives. You and I have the greatest opportunity in the world to make a difference. Wherever you are on this earth reading this, it is time to take our self confidence to another level. There is no more time for you and I to say we cannot do something. There is no more time for taking the back seat to life. We have to believe and the time to start believing is now.

Throughout my life, I fought against myself. In fact, my biggest competitor has always been the person I look at in the mirror each day. Some of my friends would say to me, “J Scott, you are your biggest critic and you’re too hard on yourself.” I appreciated my friends sharing this with me but what they failed to understand, I had to be this way. There were many moments throughout my life where people didn’t believe in me. People told me I couldn’t do what I was wanting to accomplish in life. I had to dig deep inside and find self motivation and an inner drive. I had to find a way to believe.

“If you don’t believe in yourself, then who will?” – J Scott

I don’t know where you are on your journey in life. What I do know is at some point you and I both battle with having the confidence we need to be who we are suppose to be. I have come to learn and understand, when I have great confidence in myself I usually do a much better job compared to when I lack confidence. I may not be the best speaker, the best teacher, the best leader, but the fact I believe in myself, helps me to understand that I can be confident in who God made me to be. I do bring something valuable to the table, I do have something to offer, I am worth listening to.

Confidence is something I believe God wants you and I to have. If you think about it, usually, lack of confidence stems from having fear. God did not make us to live life on earth in fear. He has given us power to overcome our fears. Imagine, if you and I became a fearless warrior toward our passions and gifts. Imagine the lives we can touch. Imagine the people we can help grow and overcome their fears. I’m getting excited knowing the possibilities that are heading our way all because we have decided to believe in ourselves.

Here are 5 ways you can start believing in yourself:

  1. Write down your fears.
  2. Write encouraging notes all around your house.
  3. Tackle something you’ve been afraid to do.
  4. Get around people who are immersed in self confidence.
  5. Tell yourself every morning, “I can and I will accomplish what I set out to do today.”

“More self confidence and less self condemnation.” – J Scott

P.S. What are some ways you have built confidence in your life? Leave a comment below and don’t forget to share this on your social media with your friends and family.

 

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Living Without Fear

On the zip line in Cancun Mexico
On the zip line in Cancun Mexico
Since I have been in ministry the past 3 years of my life I have been learning how to live without fear. Think about this for a second. As a leader, as a minister, mentor, preacher and teacher I am always in front of someone. I am always speaking or sharing something. This can be scary at times. Not knowing how to respond to tough conversations, prayer requests, what direction to go in with a text for a sermon, what advice to offer to a student, etc… The list can go on. Fear lingers at times.

I remember my first year and a half of ministry living in fear a lot of the time. I was afraid to speak up in meetings, I would hold in things I wanted to share, and I would hold back. All in all I didn’t know how to use my voice. As I reflect on my first year and a half in ministry, the fear of failure, fear of others and fear of what other people would think were barriers in my life. The question that began to run through my mind and that God placed on my heart during those days was: what would it look like to live a life without fear and is this possible?

I am a person who loves new adventures, new challenges and new journeys. Sometimes I consider myself to be an adrenaline junkie. As you can see in the picture above and the picture below there is something exciting about doing something I feared or never done before. I once heard Will Smith say in an interview when he was asked, what motivates you? His response was, “fear.” He said, “I hate being afraid to do something.” This has stuck with with me since the first time I heard his response two years ago. I give my all to embody this message daily by attacking my fears.

Jumping off a 20 ft cliff
Jumping off a 20 ft cliff

Fear has this unique way of saying, you are not capable of getting this done, you shouldn’t do anything, why you, just sit there and do nothing. Fear has a way of trying to keep you tied to your past. Fear does not want you to walk into a powerful and dynamic future. With this being said, fear needs to get out of the way! Would you agree?

Fear has power and control but the key to understanding fear, is to understand we are the ones that give fear power and control. Here is what I mean. So much of fear is mental. Fear comes from our imagination and emotion. If we believe something is a threat, a danger to us or scary we will begin to believe in fear. To me, fear is a choice. I have the option and choice to be afraid or to not be afraid. I have the option and choice to believe fear is real or it is not real. You have the same choice and option. This means we can conquer each and everyone of our fears on today!

Making a Splash
Making a Splash

Here are 5 tips to overcoming fear:

1) Understand that fear is a choice.

2) The spirit of fear is not of God.

3) Ask yourself why you are living in fear.

4) Write down your fears and come up with ways and strategies to overcome.

5) Do what you are afraid of doing.

Your mind has so much power! It is time to unlock your mind and set yourself free. You will feel more confident. You will be more alive than ever before. I do not believe God created us to live in fear. We are His children and we should be living a fearless life. God has given us gifts and talents to use for His glory. When we are living in fear, we hinder ourselves from using our gifts and talents for God’s glory.

Challenge for this weekend and the weeks to come:

Do something you have been afraid to do. Hopefully this something is positive and fun! πŸ™‚

As you can tell I was happy
As you can tell I was fearless and happy!
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Don’t Be Afraid To Love

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For years I was afraid to love. I was afraid to give another human being my heart, my trust, my everything. Love can be scary. Reading books about love, magazines about love, watching movies about love, and seeing how love was dealt and dished out in my home growing up left me with questions. Questions like: Is this for me? Can I seriously love someone for the rest of my life? What if love doesn’t work out the way I want it to? What if someone breaks my heart? Will I ever recover?

Coming from an environment, background and childhood where love was tossed around like a game, I began to become callus to what real love looked life. I experienced glimpses of what love looked like, what it felt like, how it was to be shared and received but still I didn’t have a definite understanding on love. (I’m still learning as I go)

When it came to love, for me, during my teenage years I wanted to experience something real but I was trapped in a game that most young men play. Which is, abuse love, make it seem real to women, lie to women to get what you want, just don’t get caught up in your own game.

I was scarred. Not many good examples around me, fighting against the system in which I grew up in, the games I played with hearts and trying to find my pathway in life, the Creator of love met me on my journey in life. I heard about a love that was unconditional, a love that was unchanging, never ending, a love that was powerful enough to change my heart, my way of life, thinking, and actions. This type of love that I was hearing about intrigued me. It didn’t seem real. I certainly knew I didn’t deserve to experience a love so genuine; especially given the way I was abusing love. But I got captured!

A 17 year old young man, fighting against his environment, fighting against what everyone else was doing, fighting against becoming a statistic, fighting against society, culture, fighting against lust; the battle to living in love certainly seemed like a battle that could not be won. In this process of allowing this great divine love to capture me I had to come to the realization that I had to let go of everything I knew, everything I had been taught and throw it out the window.

There I was. Standing at a cross road where my past and future were clashing. There in the present was a Savior calling me to let go and stop being afraid of change. To stop being afraid of His great love. Not sure about you but change can be scary. It’s not easy letting go. Think about it. The God of the Universe, the Creator of all, desiring you to give up your life to come and be apart of something greater. To come live with Him. Is that not crazy or what?

Being afraid to love and not knowing how to love is a real struggle. Is it easy to love? No, it’s not but having a God that helps, a God that provides, a God that guides, makes it all possible. We don’t have to be afraid anymore to love. We can let go of our doubts, insecurities and we can love freely. We can love with everything we got. We can love with every fiber. As we love our God and continue to develop our love relationship with Him, He will shape each love relationship in our life. Love is the greatest gift of all and I want to continue to live and dish out all of the love I have to give while I am here on this earth. Amen!?

1 John 4:18

“There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love.”