“The LORD is my light and my salvation—whom shall I fear? The LORD is the stronghold of my life—of whom shall I be afraid?” Psalm 27:1 (NIV)
During my husband’s consult appointment for a routine medical procedure, the nurse practitioner ordered a second, more uncommon test.
Upon reading more about the potential diagnosis the test could confirm, I felt annoyed. Why couldn’t my husband take better care of himself? Why was the medical staff so insensitive about such a serious test?
God enacted a heart-check of His own: Why are you angry?
My quick response surprised me and annoyed me more: I’m afraid.
I knew I was not supposed to be afraid — doesn’t the Bible say so 365 times? But the heart-check continued: Why are you afraid?
My answers made me squirm. I’m afraid of losing my husband. I’m afraid of living life without him. I’m afraid of being responsible for everything if he is incapacitated.
I suspect we have all faced fear at some point in life, and what we fear varies for each of us. Fear often springs from past memories or the unknown future. We may not even realize what we fear until we get into a dangerous situation. Then fear has a name, and we scramble to figure out how to cope and shake it off.
The Bible — in addition to telling us not to fear 365 times — often gives reasons for God’s instructions. I love that! It’s like God knew we would ask why and how.
Psalm 27 specifically explains why we don’t need to fear even the most dangerous situation: “The LORD is my light and my salvation—whom shall I fear? The LORD is the stronghold of my life—of whom shall I be afraid?” (Psalm 27:1).
David, the writer of this psalm, had good reason to struggle with fear. The Philistine army stood in front of him, and jealous, murderous King Saul was at his back. Yet David gave three reasons why confidence in God’s character can strengthen us to face any fear we feel.
- God is our Guide. “The LORD is my light …” (Psalm 27:1a) Light illuminates a dark path, showing us where to step and what to avoid. When we cry to God for help, He shares His wisdom with us so we will know how to avoid danger and bad decisions that could make the circumstances worse. (James 1:5-6)
- God is our Rescuer. “The LORD is my … salvation—whom shall I fear?” (Psalm 27:1a) If we do find ourselves caught in a bad situation, God has the power and willingness to save us from harm. We may wonder why God allowed us to get so far into the mess in the first place, but when He rescues us, we can have no doubt it came from Him.
- God is our Protector. “The LORD is the stronghold of my life …” (Psalm 27:1b) A stronghold is a place fortified against attack. For David, it could have been a series of caves where his men could stay hidden and safe from storms, wild animals and the pursuit of King Saul. His stronghold probably held a strong defense line of well-trained soldiers, weapons and other supplies. For us, God Himself is our secure location. His power acts as a heavenly shield against any spiritual enemy that seeks to destroy us.
Whatever you might face — storm, sickness or strife — you can live in confidence that God stands ready to help you move past your fear through His guidance, salvation and protection. He can handle whatever fear you face.
Thank You, Father, that You are bigger and stronger than anything in this world. I can lay aside any fear because You are with me. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
OUR FAVORITE THINGS
We know that prayer is a good thing. But sometimes it’s hard to know where to start. Especially when it comes to our most important relationships or deepest desires, like our relationship with our husband or even our desire to have a husband. It’s challenging to figure out what to say to God when there’s nothing specific to pray or when we find ourselves frustrated. That's why we created these two resources: “15 Prayers for Your Husband” and “15 Prayers for Your Future Husband.” Click here to download “15 Prayers for Your Husband” or here for “15 Prayers for Your Future Husband.”
Karen Wingate’s book, With Fresh Eyes, invites readers to reawaken the wonder of what they observe in creation — great and small — and how God is working in everyday moments. In each of her 60 meditations, Karen’s humor and whimsy draw a connection between physical sight and spiritual understanding that will leave readers with a renewed joy and delight in what is good and beautiful, and will reassure them that God still works in the lives of his people. Get your copy today here!
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FOR DEEPER STUDY
Psalm 121:1-2, “I lift up my eyes to the mountains—where does my help come from? My help comes from the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth.” (NIV)
2 Kings 6:16-17, “‘Don’t be afraid,’ the prophet answered. ‘Those who are with us are more than those who are with them’ … Then the LORD opened the servant’s eyes, and he looked and saw the hills full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha.” (NIV)
What things of this earth stir up fear within you? Read the powerful story in 2 Kings 6:8-17 that tells what the fearful servant of Elisha saw when an enemy army encamped around Elisha’s house. How does this example of God’s protection help you cope with fear? Share with us in the comments!
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