To Speak Or Not To Speak–That’s The Problem

I’m not afraid of snakes or spiders.

I am, however, quite fearful of the dark (still) and of being alone for extended periods of time.images-1

Fear equals loss of rational thinking.

One thing that defies rationality is my fear of speaking. Publicly.

It may be hard to believe that I, with so many words and opinions–and such a strong desire to share all of them–would struggle with being given the opportunity to share those words and opinions efficiently with a large group of people.

images-2Where I have no problem picking up spiders with Isley or holding a snake with Sydney, public speaking brings an unsettledness to my stomach that requires me to be in close proximity to a bathroom.

Fear is a funny thing.

The things I fear are those things I’ve no control over, I don’t understand or have no confidence in accomplishing.

I don’t fear snakes and spiders because I’ve held them and have never been bitten by them. That could change. I fear the dark because I don’t know what it holds. My imagination gets carried away with things that go bump in the night. (I’ve read too many scary novels. And comic books.) I fear being alone for long periods of time because I know me–I waste time and can get into trouble. (In a sane, adult way.)

I fear public speaking because I’m not sure my words will really communicate what’s in my heart. That I’ll misspeak and say 12112181_10156200892215360_8365959656599599575_nsomething so wrong or so stupid that I can’t talk my way out of it. Plus I don’t do it enough to be comfortable with it.

So I faced that fear. Wanting to be courageous and confident. A five-minute presentation. (No big deal, right?) Before 1,000 people.

And it was fine. I didn’t embarrass myself with goofy words or ludicrous ideas.

People were genuinely kind with their encouragement.

Pretty sure I’ll still be fearful if I’m asked to do this again.

Life is full of fear. Some rational. Some ridiculous. Each of us has our pet fears that we hide away hoping they won’t be discovered. Not wanting to deal with them.

God understands my fears. He’s not surprised by it nor put off by it. He consistently reminds me that He’s greater than any fear I may have.

“So we can say with confidence, ‘The Lord is my Helper, so I will have no fear. What can mere people do to me?’”   Hebrews 13:6

I’m not saying that knowing Jesus automatically releases me from all my fears. It’s in developing a relationship with Him that I can grow in confidence as to who I really am in Him. And who He really is in me.

Being afraid isn’t the deal breaker–it’s what I do with my fear. Fear is something I can give to the Lord, allowing Him to deal with my heart and address my issues.

Knowing Jesus is my confidence-builder. I’m choosing to grow in that relationship.

Talking about Him? I’ll agree to that.

Hang my tummy quivers.












15 responses to “To Speak Or Not To Speak–That’s The Problem”

  1. Dayle, I resonate with your, Life is full of fear – and again, GOD UNDERSTANDS my fears and IS GREATER than ALL my fears! [Hang my tummy quivers, also!] Thanks for the verse from Hebrews 13:5 as well! [I’m afraid of snakes.]


    1. I’ll own this–fear is my default sin. The place my head and heart go to when I don’t think I can do something–or don’t want to do something. And snakes are no big deal–just don’t mess with the venomous ones.


  2. Dayle you did a great job as the Lord worked in and thru you! Thanks friend.


    1. Oh, El, thanks for your sweet words. I know God asks me to do these things–and I’m grateful He doesn’t leave me alone to do them! Miss you!


  3. OK, as much as I love you, I gotta say the pic of spiders and especially the one of the snakes was disgusting!!!! I know your perfect world would probably be someone who you think is eloquent willing to share your words and opinions when it comes to public speaking. And yet because you always rely on Him and lean into who He is, you always do an amazing job. I only wish I could have been there. Kudos for your faith and obedience!


    1. Thanks, Pen. You’re right–it’s so much easier to see the capability of others than my own. Not relying on Him would be like standing in front of a crowd–naked and foolish. Not a pretty picture! Wish you could have been there, too–we’d have gone out for coffee afterwards!


  4. alice fredricks Avatar
    alice fredricks

    Love your willingness to do it even WITH your fear. AND, by the way, whenever I’ve heard you I hear a heart that loves Jesus and one of His daughters who knows how to communicate it well, too!! Keep “buying up” those opportunities!!


    1. Thanks, Allie. Fear is one of those unwelcome guests that hides in my heart and pops out at the most ridiculous times. I’d love it if Jesus would just nail that door shut.


  5. So glad you chose courage over fear and shared His grace with us! Love you and your God-inspired words… written AND spoken!


    1. You, my sweet word-crafting friend, are encouraging–and also inspiring. I appreciate your take on life and our walk with Jesus.


  6. AwakeningSardis Avatar

    Aww I wish I was there to hear you speak courageous Dayle. What was the event? What did you speak about?


    1. Day of Prayer–so the place was full. Spoke on Philippians 2:1-8–considering others as better than ourselves. Humility. Willingness to serve without acknowledgement. You know, all the things I struggle with!


      1. AwakeningSardis Avatar

        That’s awesome. 🙂 Real Dayle talks. I like. 🙂 Way to be brave.


  7. Oh friend, I was sorry I didn’t get to talk with you afterward. Your heart came through, shining, a light pointing us to press into Jesus. That’s what you wanted, isn’t it? Mission accomplished!


    *Julie Sanders* *Editor and Storytelling Coach* 407.854.1481 work 317.650.8620 cell


    1. You, my friend, are a wordsmith of the highest order–and words from you always mean so much. Thanks for the encouragement! I still really really really don’t like doing it!


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