The Fear Grip

(*Previously published blog)

Have you ever been gripped with fear?  If you can’t answer “yes” to that question, then you are either non-human or just being stubborn.  

So, what are some fears we face on a daily basis?  Well, off the top of my head, I come up with the fear of failure, fear of the unknown, fear of the what-ifs, fear of being alone, fear of not getting my needs met, fear of rejection, or even the fear of success (yes, that’s possible!) 

So what’s up with these fears?  This morning as I sat down to have my quiet time, I began reading Psalm 112.  The beginning of the passage talks about how we are to “fear the Lord,” and in so doing, we will be blessed.  I want to be blessed, but fear the Lord?  Doesn’t He love us?  Is He supposed to cause me fear?

To fear the Lord, means we have great respect and reverence for Him.  But the passage doesn’t stop there, it also talks about the fear that we feel in the dark times of our lives.  In verse 4, it says, “Even in darkness light dawns for the upright, for the gracious and compassionate and righteous man.”  

Perhaps you are going through a dark time right now.  Maybe your fears are coming from something that is beyond you…out of your control.  God promises that if we fear Him and follow His ways, light will dawn on us, or “break through” the darkness.

There are so many causes and circumstances in this world and in this profession that can overshadow and bring darkness.  Let’s face it, the numbers continue to rise for law enforcement fatalities.  We are bombarded on every side with job layoffs, marriage break-ups, and financial disasters.  The times can be scary indeed.  However, His love is unfailing and never absent.  Even in the toughest of circumstances, God can light the way.

I remember a time specifically when I was taught this valuable lesson.  It was the middle of the night and Rick was working the midnights.  The kids were tucked in their beds and I was tossing and turning as the rain, wind, and hail were disturbing my peace of mind, gripping my heart with fear.  Would we lose the roof from one of our gigantic trees?  Worse yet, would the tornado sirens go off and force me to gather my sleepy children and head to the downstairs level, with the potential of losing everything?  I was scared.  I hate storms.  Especially at night when my husband is not there. 

As I lay there and silently prayed, a spirit of peace came over me.  In the distance, I could faintly make out the song of a bird.  Really?  Birds singing at night…in the middle of a storm?!  But then it hit me.  God had given the bird perfect peace, peace I should have had.  And, the bird was directly in the middle of the storm.  Still yet, she had found her voice to sing.  What a lesson for all of us!

Looking back at Psalm 112 it describes how His blessings do not end with the promise of a break-through in the middle of our crisis, but also talks about our conduct.  It reads, Good will come to him who is generous and lends freely, who conducts his affairs with justice.”  Officers, your conduct on the streets are closely watched not only by those around you, but by the Lord.  Wives, your conduct within your place of business or in the home are closely monitored by the Lord, and He will bring you good if you serve Him with your every attitude and act.  That alone should eliminate many of our fears just knowing that God sees our heart-acts (those deeds we do for others at God’s direction, that sometimes go unnoticed by the world).  He will reward or bring us good for those moments.

It goes on to say “Surely he will never be shaken; a righteous man will be remembered forever.”  So what frightens you?  The Lord promises that we will not be shaken or as the Hebrew words puts it, “mowt”, which means to totter, shake, slip, overthrow, or drop.  He, the Keeper of the stars, holds us in the palm of His hand and will not allow us to be dropped and forgotten, but will remember us – who we are and what we need.  Though it may not come in our time frame or in the way we would choose, He will provide for and meet our needs, bringing glory to Himself.

Lastly, verse 7 and 8 says, “He will have no fear of bad news: his heart is steadfast, trusting in the LORD.  His heart is secure, he will have no fear; in the end he will look in triumph on his foes.”

What a statement!  Though bad news swarms the media today; though we might receive that pink slip in the mail or that notice of foreclosure, or that threat from an enemy, we do not have to be afraid or fear because our hope comes from the Lord.  He keeps our minds at perfect peace.

So, today I want to encourage you, that whatever you’re afraid of, give it to God and leave it there.  He wants to fill your heart and mind with peace and give you victory over your enemy.  He desires to give you a break-through and offer you a secure heart.  No longer is the fear grip upon you, but you can sing triumphantly in the midst of your fears.