It was my first “big” paid speaking engagement.
I had an hour-long drive – on a good-traffic day – and our information meeting was at 8:00 am. It was on a Friday, so I knew I’d be in the thick of rush-hour traffic.
Due to being anxiety-prone, as prevention of said anxiety, I am most often early to appointments. My plan was to leave at 6:30 that morning. Somehow, when I turned the key in the ignition and glanced at the clock on the dash of my Jeep, it read, 7:00.
I willed myself not to panic, but I couldn’t seem to push back the anxiety as I drove.
I visualized prior years when I had driven to the conference as an attendee and the lines of traffic waiting to get into the gate of the college, and then more waiting in a long line of traffic to get around to the back side of the building, where I’d been told, there was a place reserved with my name on it.
I white-knuckled the steering wheel and accelerated at 80mph for a time in the “speed limit 70” zone. I was going right along with the rest of traffic, mind you [I know you know what I’m talking about] but it was the anxiety that made me feel guilty most of all.
Anxious me, going to give a message at a CHRISTIAN conference. Oy.
I was about 25 minutes from my destination, when the Holy Spirit broke through, reminding me of a lesson I’d been learning, but forgetting – ahem.”I’m listening Lord!”
“Thanksgiving precedes the miracle” as Ann Voskamp stated in her book, 1,000 Gifts.
At that moment, I opened my lips and broke through the devil’s wall, “Thank you God, that you go before me and you are directing my steps – my jeep. You made a way through the Red Sea for Israel, You can part the traffic and make a way for me to get to my destination on time!” . . . and I kept thanking Him out loud, speaking TRUTH until I had absolute PEACE guarding my heart and mind.
I also boldly asked Him, “and will you please get me in the room with three minutes to spare?”
It so happened, I drove into the gate and all the way around to my parking space with NO traffic or waits. I walked into the room where our meeting took place. I chatted with a few of the other speakers before Jane took the microphone and said, “Okay, it’s 7:57, so we will get started in a few minutes.”
I smiled at God who had been smiling the whole time.
And then I added that story into my messages that weekend, as well as to my heart-files, where the stories of my past can speak to my present and prosper my future. By His grace, I will bring Jesus glory for my faithful acts done while I live here on earth. 2 Thessalonians 1:11-12
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7
Do you have stories stored away to inform your faith today?
Have you shared them with your family and friends so they can be building blocks of faith for them?
Where are you tolerating worry and anxiety?
You can “open your lips and crush the devil’s wall” and walk in peace today!