The Scary Place

I have been reading a book called Becoming a King by Morgan Snyder. It’s a ‘man book’ written in a style similar to that of John Eldredge, and it has been a great refresher on the danger of getting what we want when we want it, including the comfort we strive for.

Even though I’m not what you would call an avid outdoor enthusiast, I do like being active and outdoors. However, COVID has made my indoor walls a bit more snug. Sometimes, they feel close in an irritating way, but mostly in a nice warm blanket kind of way. I can pick up my groceries, or anything else that I need, curbside without leaving my car or even having to put the bags in the back. There are hours of adventure just a Netflix click away, and I can have practically anything delivered to my house. All of this is making my life safe and cushy. My life feels manufactured. I give money earned by my expertise for someone else’s labor.

Scripted another way, this could sound like luxury. However, I’m sensing it’s a trap.

A few weeks ago, our dishwasher broke and after some online searching, it seemed all symptoms pointed to the motor. The part was $170, but was I sure enough to just buy the part myself? Nope. Instead, I paid a tech $90 to come out to tell me it was the motor. Once diagnosed, I watched three videos on how to change the motor, and then bought a new dishwasher. Did I have the skills to change the motor myself? Probably. But, I will never know. 

I played it and paid it safe.

Somehow I have gotten hesitant to step into scary places, and I have been working on figuring out why. Tell me if any of these thoughts sound familiar.

  • “I’m afraid to do this alone. Who has my back? Who will help me if I get into a jam?”
  • “What if I don’t have what it takes?”
  • “I don’t have extra money in the budget. What if I screw this up? What if I break the part? How will I pay to fix the floors if the dishwasher leaks?” 
  • “I don’t have the time margin. What if this project takes days?” 

I did a really good job of talking myself out of repairing the dishwasher and $700. Based on my logic, if “Fortune favours the bold,” Lowe’s is getting my fortune. Honestly, I don’t think that my reasoning was all that bad, but it felt hollow. An empty longing like I had missed an opportunity for personal victory and accomplishment. My logic was a successful fail because I based it all on me not on having a God that is for me.

“Behold, God is my helper and ally; The Lord is my sustainer.” Psalm 54:4 

God has never met a dishwasher He couldn’t fix, Creme Brulee He couldn’t make, treehouse He couldn’t build, or dress He couldn’t sew. If I am His intimate ally, I need to invite Him in and ask for help. 

It’s the weekend. God is ready. Let’s go step into something. See you in the scary place!

In His service and at yours,


Published by Shawn McCarthy

While serving as the Weekend Experience Pastor at Seacoast Church, I felt God prompting me to share the moments when He would speak His truth into my life through scripture in a way that made sense to me, giving me tangible ways to learn, grow and lead. These promptings turned into weekly emails that I would send my small groups and volunteer teams. I found myself enjoying the process of digging deeper into God’s Word, being stretched by the writing process, and encouraging others in the faith. My lovely wife, Anna, challenged me to begin this blog, so these moments that I have come to call, my “Red-Letter Moments,” can find a home. My prayer is that you will find hope, comfort, and inspiration here, and above all, you will come to know that the God of the universe loves you and desires a personal relationship with you.”

3 thoughts on “The Scary Place

  1. Man, I’ve never read so many “:what ifs” gracious! Maybe that book you read, didn’t send you in the right direction. You are a positive person, that seems to have let yourself become unsure. Because of my great age (haha) I have learned, its better to “pay the man” to do it, he knows his trade as you know yours. Yours is the trust you put in God every minute of your life, and with that comes confidence in decision making.God permits us to attempt a broader picture of what we can and cannot do, but all that can be done with Him at our side. So, dear friend, accept a positive attitude and trust God to walk you through all your weaknesses.


  2. Something popped into my head that I think you could write a good piece about. The cousins of “what if’s” the “coulda shoulda wouldas “. Have a blessed day Shawn hugs

    On Fri, Sep 4, 2020 at 7:38 AM Red Letter Moments wrote:

    > > > > > > > Shawn McCarthy posted: ” > I have been reading a book called Becoming a King by Morgan Snyder. It’s a > “Man Book” written in a style similar to John Eldridge. It has been a great > refresher on the dangers of getting what we want. Getting the “comfort” > that we strive for. I am not a ” > > > >


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