by Charissa Veal

CLEVELAND, Ga., (TMNews) – Truett-McConnell College Women’s Head Soccer Coach, David McDowell, spoke to students’ fears and urged them to find their identity in Christ and keep their focus on Him in an October 23 chapel service.

Using the illustration of Jesus walking on water in Matthew 14:22-33, McDowell shared how Satan can use fear to intimidate Christians by averting their attention from Jesus and onto fear.
McDowell noted how, in the same illustration, Peter focused on the waves instead of Christ and eventually started to sink. In the same way, Christians are liable to transfer their focus from Jesus onto their fears, eventually sinking and drifting away from Christ, he said.

McDowell then identified the reason fear is able to take hold of a believer: “What we are afraid of says a lot about how strong our identity is in Christ,” he said, illustrating that Jesus’ question to Peter, “You of little faith, why did you doubt?” was to help Peter reevaluate who he was trusting in.

According to the Scripture, Peter spent the past year and a half with Jesus, watching Him perform miracles; but his fear caused him forget the power of Christ. “How often is that us?” McDowell asked students. “Sometimes we start out very strong with our walk with Christ…but then a little bit of adversity kicks in, maybe a distraction and we take our focus off Jesus and begin to sink.”

The remedy to this crisis is relatively simple, but hard, McDowell admitted. Reminding the students of Jesus’ words, “Follow Me,” McDowell emphasized Christ’s call to “fully commit to who I am,” and restated the importance of Christ’s identity.

“I’m a better dad, I’m a better husband, and I’m a better coach because everything is flowing from my relationship with Jesus,” McDowell said while pointing to Christ as the source of his own identity.” And to the students, he challenged them to consider the source of their identity: “How committed are you? Is Jesus the center of your life? Is He the priority of your life?”


Charissa Veal is a senior English major at Truett-McConnell.


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