A disorienting journey

By Dave Henning / January 15, 2024

“As with Joseph, our journey toward fulfillment of God’s purpose for our lives rarely looks like a direct route.  In fact, it can be disorienting.  When we experience a few setbacks, we start to wonder . . . if our desires and God’s plans for us will ever be fulfilled.”- Chip Ingram

“God has said, ‘Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.’  So we say with confidence, ‘The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid.  What can mere mortals do to me?’ “- Hebrews 13:4-5 (NIV)

Chip Ingram moves on in Chapter 5 of Discover Your True Self with the last three categories of fear.

 2.  Fear of rejection or being alone.  When we feel insecure, we entertain lots of negative possibilities.  As a result of our worries, we feel alienated and vulnerable.  And that happens even before we experience things like rejection or ending up alone.  Hence, Chip observes, if security means living sans care and anxiety, very few people find it.

3.  Fear of punishment or judgment.  We need reassurance that the promises of Scripture ring true.  That we indeed find security in our relationship with God.  Yet, many of us who truly sense the reality of God’s grace still live with a low-grade sense of impending judgment.  A fear that every mistake puts us on God’s bad side.

So, even with completely orthodox theology, our life experience subtly wars against that theology.  Thus, even mature believers live with the warped sense that God is down on them, judging every good or bad event.  And that, Pastor Ingram cautions, makes living disheartening, discouraging, and terrifying.

4.  Anxiety, guilt, doubts, and condemnation.  It’s possible for all the above fears to produce struggles with guilt and condemnation.  Most significantly, this morphs into a vicious cycle with insecurity building on insecurity.  We lose heart when we focus on the of our own faith.  Rather than the faithfulness of God.  It feels like we constantly walk on shaky ground.

Today’s question:  When do you tend to see life as a disorienting journey?  Please share.

Tomorrow’s blog: “Anchor our hope in God alone”

About the author

Dave Henning

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