2008 held some highlights that were obtained strictly by pressing through fear to walk in faith. My God-orchestrated 2008 highlights included: publishing my first book with Author House; purchasing space to promote my book at Dr. Sujay’s Moving Up Conference in the NY Marriott hotel; my first official book signing at Crossroads Tabernacle (CT); facilitating a No More Drama … small group at CT’s annual Ladies Retreat; guest speaker on Hurting Hearts, a Brooklyn Community Access Television (BCAT) program; guest speaker on Boost In Your Bathrobe, a daily weekday morning prayer, praise & inspiration conference call; and joining Grace, a new dance ministry that ministered through dance at the world famous Apollo Theater.

As exciting as it may sound and was, make no mistake, fear was present before and during! All was accomplished to the glory of God by standing firmly On the Solid Ground of His word. I accepted the opportunities because, in knowing that God had provided them and presented them to me, “How could I not.” Once accepted, I had to sit in His presence and seek a word for myself and His people; get centered and draw strength to do the next that He was calling me to (each round goes higher and higher). In identifying and confessing what the fear was, the Holy Spirit assuaged it with the Word; and then I chose to receive it and hold God accountable to a positive outcome, trusting that He would not let me be put to shame. (Joel 2:26) “You shall eat in plenty and be satisfied, and praise the name of the LORD your God, who has dealt wondrously with you; and My people shall never be put to shame.”

After living the first half of my life making decisions governed by fear, I now make faith based choices in spite of fear. God has proven to be faithful in every situation and always gives me what I need and instruction on how to proceed in order to accomplish each task. In stepping out in faith in spite of the fear, I have become more confident in my abilities in Him, learning that I truly can do all things through Christ, who strengthens me.

In preparing for the BCAT appearance, I was afraid that I wouldn’t know what to say or that the answers would not flow because I didn’t know what I would be asked and I felt totally outside of my comfort zone in this first time type of speaking experience (TV! Wow God). God addressed my fears and stabilized my faith through the following scriptures and word:

1. God’s word to me was: Fear Not! Do it afraid. Trust God and surrender all.

2. The scriptures were: (Joshua 1:9) “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.” (Habakkuk 2:2-3) Then the LORD answered me and said: “Write the vision and make it plain on tablets, that he may run who reads it. For the vision is yet for an appointed time; but at the end it will speak, and it will not lie. Though it tarries, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry.” (Jeremiah 1:9) Then the LORD put forth His hand and touched my mouth, and the LORD said to me: “Behold, I have put My words in your mouth.”

God was with me as promised and showed Himself through the entire process. I learned that as long as I show up in faith and obedience, humbled and surrendered, God will meet me where I am and make my way successful.

I encourage you to: Fear not! Pursue your dreams. You are not doing it alone. God is with you to help you co-create the life you desire. He will direct your steps and make the necessary provisions for you to experience the desires of your heart.

Author's Bio: 

Jo Anne Meekins is a spiritual leader and founder of Inspired 4 U Ministries LLC (www.joannemeekins-inspired4u.com), providing inspiring poetry, informational articles, and motivational messages to encourage, enlighten, and facilitate hope and transformation in the world at large.

Jo Anne is also the author of two books: ON SOLID GROUND: Inspirational Poetry For All Occasions, a book for all ages that includes poems of encouragement, challenge, relationship, celebration, comfort, testimony, ethnocentric expression; and scripture references for each poem; and For Such A Time As This, a 16-poem collection of scripture poems, poetic bible character narratives and sermon summaries. Both available for purchase at www.onsolidgroundpoetry.com.

In addition, Jo Anne is a blogger at www.Hubpages.com/profile/Inspired+4+U; a member of the Boost In Your Bathrobe Prayer Line leadership team (http://liveyourdestinytoday.com/boost-in-your-bathrobe); a founding lifetime member of Women In Ministry International/ Wisdom Women Worldwide Interfaith Center; a member of the National Writers Union; and she formerly worked as a policy & procedure writer for 7 years at Healthfirst health plan before resigning on July 30, 2010 to pursue her passion for ministry on a full time basis.

She earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Community Mental Health at New York Institute of Technology; a certificate in Basic Journalism & Poetry from Writers Institute; and a certificate in Communication Skills from the NYU School of Continuing and Professional Studies.