The most unexpected thing happened today. Our oldest daughter has been practicing to tryout for the high school worship team at church. She loves music and singing is one way she gives her worship to our Lord. Oh, I wish you could have been in our home last night during her last practice time! My husband is gifted in music and so are many of our kids. Our kitchen became filled with praise and voices were acoustically mixed together. The sound was beautiful! At one point, Maggie and I had to just stop because trying to sing or in my case chop up a salad, is near impossible when your eyes are filled with tears of joy. This moment served as yet another reminder that worship is so much apart of our everyday life, especially in our home. How can we live any other way? How can we not respond to the love of our God?
This morning I offered to drive her to the audition and Vivian tagged along. She claimed it was her day, but Maggie could come too. I had not planned on going inside, but we saw a dear friend in the parking lot so in we went. A young worship leader spotted Maggie waiting and came out to visit. Such simple encouragement was spoken, but it hit me big time. He said, “At some point you just have to decide not to be nervous.” What? Could it really be that simple? So, you just decide to not let fear control you and you step out and try? And here I thought it was Maggie’s audition and I was just along for the ride.
If that would have been the end of the conversation, enough would have been said and I would have walked away blessed. However, my stomach was in a knot and my nerves were a mess. Watching Maggie walk through the door to go tryout sent me back to when I was about 10 years old. I spent hours practicing and singing along with Amy Grant to audition for a musical at my church. My dad worked with me and I felt ready. My mom drove me to the audition and I was extremely nervous. I hopped out of the car, walked into church and right up to the closed door. All I had to do was open the door and sing for a chance at a part in the musical. I walked up to the door, but chose not to open it. I turned and walked away – defeated.
Fast forward thirty three years later and I watched my daughter open the door. Yes, she was still nervous and afraid of messing up, but she did not let fear stop her from trying. (Ironically, one of the songs she sang today is by Hillsong called “Who You Say I Am” and you need to listen to it.)While I could turn this back on me and wonder what would have happened if I had walked through my audition door, I choose not too. Instead, what I celebrate is fear not having the final word. Not today and not any other day.
We read in 1 John 4:18, “There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love.” My daughter does not let fear rule her and it is because she knows she is loved. She is loved by us, but more importantly by her Heavenly Father. I have said it before and I will say it again, knowing and believing you are loved, makes all the difference. Only His love is perfect and has the power to cast out all fear.
Home is where our children hear and are shown that they are loved by God. It might be around our table or standing in the kitchen, but our home will be a place where love is lived out daily. We make lots of mistakes and forget that we are loved. In the forgetting, we say hurtful things and act selfishly. In the forgetting, we let fear rule our hearts and we live accordingly. I say not in this home. Love is deeply rooted and lived as a response to God’s abundant love for us here.
Doors will continue to stand before each of my children. Some doors will open and some will not. As their mom, one of my prayers for them is that they will trust their loving God in the walking through the door or onto the next one. I pray they remain fearless and brave because they know they are loved. His love is perfect, so walk in it kids and never let fear tell you otherwise.
*The picture is Vivian watching Maggie audition today.