Chasing the Son September 2022
Editor’s Note: In a nod to our Presbyterian heritage, we regularly feature a column from a PMMA® chaplain in our newsletter. This month’s column comes from Dave Parker, chaplain at Salina Presbyterian Manor®. Chaplain Dave joined in July 2022 and is the pastor of a church in Abilene, Kansas. His earlier career was in the financial industry. Dave coaches soccer and loves to sing and play music.
Chasing the Son
By Dave Parker
“For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control” (1 Timothy 1:7).
I am deathly afraid of heights. Not so much high places, but edges. Mountain roads that are sheer, edges of buildings, roofs, even ladders. Above the third rung on a ladder, I feel like I’ve accomplished something. But I can assure you my heart is pounding as I step up to that fourth rung.
I tried crossing the Royal Gorge Bridge in Colorado many years ago. I was just fine — until I looked down and could see between the metal planks under my feet. I immediately dropped to my knees, did an about-face and crawled back 20 feet to solid ground. Then I sat there for a while, just to make sure the world was stable.
Heights are just not my thing. I simply do not trust my own ability to stay safe around edges, and I don’t intend to try to conquer that fear any time soon. We all have certain fears that hold us back. Some may be more obvious than others. Maybe those fears keep us from being all that God wants us to be for Him. Too often, fear may turn into complacency, as we give it too much control over our life. We try to justify an attitude of, “What’s the point in trying? I’ll just work around it.”
This is especially true when it comes to sharing the Gospel: Fear of rejection turns into avoidance. But Paul tells us that rather than allow fear to direct us, the Spirit fills us with the power and love of Jesus Christ. He will guide our steps. This gives us courage and strength to live our lives without the fear of worldly obstacles.
There is no fear in Christ. His perfect love for us strips away all the insecurities, doubts and uncertainties. In His image, we are empowered to go make disciples. We are filled with the Spirit of Jesus, and as He promised, He is always with us wherever we go - even on edges. The love of God conquers all things.
Lord, we place our faith in You. We lift ourselves to Your service for Your mission to build Your church. Thank You for loving us perfectly and giving us your Son as the pathway to redemption and eternal life with Him. In Jesus’ name. Amen.