Sometimes we have a conviction that causes us to believe in something so strongly that we are motivated to push past our deepest fears with courage. In this episode of the Calibrate Life podcast we talk about stirring up the gift of God within us, pushing past the fears, and embracing our strongest convictions.
Continue Reading for Our Episode Notes…
Fan the Flame, Overcome Fear, and Live Your Convictions
We’ve come into a new zone in life and I’ve been facing some deep rooted insecurities and fears. We want to be authentic because if we do so, we believe we will fulfill our desire of cutting some paths through the jungle of life.
I have a fear of asking, of dependence, and of receiving. I have other fears as well… sadly… but these are the ones I’m staring down right now. Praying about this, I took a fresh look at 2 Timothy 1.6-7.
“For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands, for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.” 2 Timothy 1.6-7 ESV
How do we push through fear and into bold action?
Conviction moves courage forward.
It’s not a matter of working up your belief in yourself or your mission to be successful, this is about conviction.
There’s a difference between a conviction and a belief. A conviction is a fixed and firm belief. It is a proven belief of which we are convinced. A conviction is something for which we are willing to make great sacrifice. A conviction is something that is so strong we will push fear aside and move forward with courage.
We have a conviction when we are convinced. When a criminal is convicted it is a declaration that the jury is convinced of their guilt. When I feel convicted of my sin, it is because the Holy Spirit has convinced me of my error and I am prompted to make a change.
When we have a conviction we are convinced. We take bold and decisive action because I know it is right. We will speak that which We believe to be truth, because we are convinced.
When we are not convinced, when there is doubt, we are indecisive in our actions.
“But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind. For that person must not suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord;” James 1.6-7 ESV
When we doubt, we are not convinced and do not operate out of a conviction that God will answer our prayers.
We cannot be convinced of everything, but we must be convinced of something. While we (personally) lack the faith to believe God will answer every prayer we utter with the answer we want, we do have a conviction that we can trust God to guide us in our praying and he will complete his revealed will.
So, how do we stand with courage in our conviction? How do we boldly take action on the things of which we are convinced?
Fan into Flame the Gift of God
The greatest gift of God is the Holy Spirit, God’s Spirit, or His Presence within us. We’ve received gifts from the Spirit. We’ve received everything we need for life and godliness (2 Peter 1.3). Visualize a fireplace with a waning fire. The wood is stacked on glowing embers, but there is no flame. You fan the embers to fuel them with oxygen, they increase in intensity, and the wood erupts into full flame.
The gift of God is in us. God’s direction, the revelation, the vision, and the empowerment to act upon our convictions. All of the elements are in place.
I have a long term relationship with fear. A fear of failure. A fear of what people will think. A fear that I’m not good enough, fast enough, or smart enough. That fear has been fuel to me to be better, to prepare more, to strive for perfection.
Sadly, a lot of my gifts have been fanned by a fear of failure. Instead, we must position ourselves to the warmth of God’s gift within us. We are to fan into flame the gift of God, to act with confidence in the gift and conviction for the task. Not out of a fear of failure, but out of a conviction of what must be.
How do we fuel the gift of God? One way is with conviction. Conviction, a steadfast certainty, stirs up the gift of God. We have a conviction regarding our mission, what we believe is true about it, and our calling to it. We don’t guess, we are convinced. We must execute our mission.
Fear keeps us from being certain. Fear keeps us from embracing a conviction. Fear causes doubt, and doubt paralyzes.
What fans the gift of God within us into full flame? What activates God’s gifts within us? Conviction to the degree of taking bold action on what we are convinced is true.
Fear is not God’s Gift
When we are motivated by fear we are moved forward by our humanity. Fear is a human reality. Psalm 56.3 is a remedy for fear, “When I am afraid, I will trust in (God)….” Trust takes us beyond the things we can see and into the realm of the unseen. Faith, belief, and even conviction causes us to anchor in a revelation, but trust solidifies our faith and empowers us to walk forward on a path not clearly seen.
Fear dissuades us but trust keeps moving us forward.
A “spirit of fear” is indicated when fear becomes our default. It may be a spiritual battle or a human tendency. Motivation from a “spirit of fear” is not a God-motivation.
God has given us three things that lead us to anchor in our convictions.
The gift of God includes an empowerment from the Holy Spirit. We often quote Zechariah 4:6, “It is not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit says the Lord of Hosts.” This is a reminder that the huge God sized tasks we take on require a spiritual empowerment.
Empowerment dispels fear. When we know we have the power to accomplish a task we approach it with boldness and confidence.
Conviction expects empowerment, because a conviction prompts us to believe the task is worthy of God’s intervention.
When we are convinced, love reminds us that God is for us.
Love is the most powerful motivator. God was motivated by love to sacrifice his Son for our redemption. Love was Christ’s motivation for submitting to the cross. Our conviction has to be powered by love, and most perfectly powered by God’s love.
One of the biggest problems I’ve faced is really believing that God loved me and had designed my best life for me. To see ourselves as sons and daughters is to understand our place and position in the Kingdom of God.
Our convictions must be solidified in the love of God. We will go because we trust God’s love for us and for those to whom he sends us.
God has given us the self-control to execute our convictions.
Self-control is discipline. It is the steering mechanism. The rudder on the mightiest of ships controls the direction of the ship. Self-control is FOCUS. Self-control is execution. Through self-control we steer ourselves to GO.
Our convictions must manifest in actions, habits, and practices. Self-control is the gift of God to draw what we really believe into action.
Fear keeps us from acting, but self-control steers us into taking consistent actions.
Calibration Tools… Calibrating Our Lives and Lifting Those We Love and Lead
- Of what are you convinced? What are your convictions? What are the beliefs that you believe enough to take courageous action?
- What is the conviction of your calling? Not the things you think would be a good idea, or the things you will do someday, what is/are the thing(s) rooted in a deep conviction? Not the things you should do, but what must you do?
- What are the gifts of God within you that have prepared or empowered you to act on your convictions?
- What are the fears you must overcome?
- What are the actions, habits, and practices you will exercise through spiritual empowerment and self-control to move your convictions forward?
We have a conviction about the direction of our lives. The thing in the forefront right now is a mission to lift and equip leaders across the continent of Africa. There are obstacles. There are things to overcome. Our conviction has to be strong enough to boldly press past the obstacles.
Your conviction will give you a tenacity to trust God for your next steps. Your conviction will motivate you to fan into flame the gifts God has given you, embrace his empowerment, be motivate by his love, and exercise the self-control to focus on the pursuit of the things you most strongly believe.