There was something on my mind the whole time on Sunday during the ARISE worship concert. I kept asking myself: why did Li-Ann prefer to sit rather than stand during the concert? Was it her tummy that was still unwell? Was she hungry? Did she have stage fright? Was it the loud music or the bright lights? I didn’t ask her directly but just made sure she ate, she was alright and then, I urged her to join the others to worship the Lord. Then I would take my usher position at the entrance and check on LA and Rebecca now and then.
Then on Monday morning, I woke up and got the answer to my question. Li-Ann sat because she was afraid she would fall off the platform. I felt so bad that I cried. Because I could have helped her but I didn’t realise it. She was paralysed by her fears. As I recalled all their rehearsals, they practiced on the floor and LA always enjoyed herself. Even on the day of the final rehearsal at the Expo, she stood with the others, but slightly behind Rebecca right at the top of the steps. Rebecca was her security. However, on the actual day of the concert, she was to stand next to Rebecca but not at the steps. Her security was gone. To increase her centre of gravity, she chose to sit down. She chose wisely. I could almost sense her anxieties within her – while she wanted so much to join in, she couldn’t. As all these thoughts raced through my mind, I was reminded of 1 John 4:18
There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear…
Then I asked LA about this and she nodded in reply, telling me that ‘some people touch her’. Poor girl! So I explained that it was rather cramped on the platform and that’s why it happened. The children standing behind her had no ill intentions.
I learnt a few lessons:
1. Many of us are so badly paralysed by fears which we may not be aware of or be able to express. If only we would go to God and tell Him, He will set us free. Even if we do not know how to tell Him, if we desire to be set free, He will give us the victory too.
23 Search me, O God, and know my heart;
test me and know my anxious thoughts.
26In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express. 27And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints in accordance with God’s will.
2. We need to listen to the hearts of our children. I wish I had listened to LA. I was too busy and didn’t give her time to tell me. I must admit I do neglect my children in times of my busyness too. This is something hubby has often cautioned me about – not to let my fatigue or busyness interfere with time spent with the children. Thank you dear for that reminder to focus on my priorities.
3. We need to listen to God. As I prayed that day for LA to worship God, I forgot to listen to God. I just kept talking and didn’t ask God what He wants me to do. God, being all knowing, surely knows the reasons but if I refused to listen, then He won’t be able to tell me too.
18 There is surely a future hope for you,
and your hope will not be cut off.
19 Listen, my son, and be wise,
and keep your heart on the right path.
4. We need to hide God’s Word in our hearts. First, I saw the urgency to pray for Li-Ann’s salvation and that of all our children. God wants ALL children to go to Him.
14Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”
Secondly, what happened made me realise that a situation like this can happen again. And I may not be by my children’s side to help or listen to them. But if I teach them the Word and encourage them to memorise God’s Word, they can draw on these precious gems in times of need. The God who is The Perfect Love will then comfort them and give them peace.
20 My son, pay attention to what I say;
listen closely to my words.
21 Do not let them out of your sight,
keep them within your heart;
22 for they are life to those who find them
and health to a man’s whole body.
23 Above all else, guard your heart,
for it is the wellspring of life.
So let’s ARISE to the Perfect Love.
Only He alone can set us free and give us the victory in Jesus Christ.
1 Corinthians 15:57
57But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.