I know I’m not alone when I say that I deal with some sort of fear every day.
When my kids were younger, my fear was if I was ruining their chances at a normal or successful life by homeschooling. I’m not a college graduate. I attended for exactly two semesters. Then I went to a trade school (to become a secretary) for two years. I graduated with an associates degree, but it’s probably not worth the paper it’s printed on. Anyway, I’m not book smart. I was an average student, at best. A struggling one is a more accurate description.
At times, when my husband would be out of town for one reason or another, I was afraid something would happen–fire, kid injured, me injured–while he was gone. The biggest fear then was fire. How would I get seven kids out of our two-story house (valid for both the house we live in now and our previous home)? I didn’t even think about valuables. My only concern was getting my older sons from their rooms on the second floor. Only one way up and one way down, except through windows. I planned our escape so many times.
EVERY time I sent a new driver off on their first solo trip, I was afraid. Well, I was afraid long before then. Sitting in the passenger seat with a new driver is not for the faint of heart. My children did get in accidents, and one actually led to a hospitalization–she wasn’t driving. We’ve had a couple of cars “totaled,” but the drivers came out without a scratch. Praise God.
As they’ve aged, I’ve feared–and still do at times–for their spiritual walk. For this one, I can only pray.
More personally, I have some unexpected fears–what do I do now that my youngest has graduated high school? Can I write full-time? Should I get a job outside the house? What will I do with the extra time if I don’t?
And then, last week, while I was at a writers’ conference, I found a new fear. I thought, maybe, my writer’s block was from either the fear of failure or the fear of success. And I guess in a way it is. My fear is not making a difference with my writing. To me, reaching just one person, helping one person is success; not doing so is failure. And the one thing God told me is that I can’t make a difference if I never write the books. Freeing. Truly.
Other real fears (and by no means an exhaustive list)
- financial security
- physical safety
- job loss
- rising prices
- children’s future
- loved one’s relationship with God
And yet, God, in His infinite wisdom, has written in His Word that we don’t need to be afraid, AND He did it 365 times. Once for every day of the year.
He knew we’d STRUGGLE.
He knew we’d struggle DAILY.
He knew we’d struggle daily with FEAR.
And he provided the solution.
When I had my surgery five and a half years ago, I was VERY afraid. There was a real possibility that I wouldn’t survive it. A higher likelihood than your everyday surgery. Brain surgery. I spent DAYS going through Scripture finding verses that spoke about not being afraid. I wrote them down as they applied to me. EVERY ONE. I still have the notebook somewhere. If I searched I would find it. I NEEDED those verses then, and somedays, I need them now.
I need to remember that I don’t have a reason to be afraid. What’s on the outside, looking in, cannot touch me without my Father’s permission. And if He allows it, then it’s for the best. I will either be blessed by the end or I’ll be with Him, an even greater blessing. It’s not easy though.
So, here are a few verses that I found helpful (I found the notebook):
- 1 John 4:18 – There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love.
- Psalm 91:4, 9-11, 14-15 – He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge, his faithfulness wil be your shield and rampart.
If you say, “The Lord is my refuge,” and you make the Most High your dwelling, no harm will overtake you, no disaster will come near your tent. For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways.
“Because he loves me,” says the Lord, “I will rescue him; I will protect him for he acknowledges my name. He will call on me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble, I will deliver him and honor him.”
- Psalm 27:1 – The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?
- Psalm 34:4 – I sought the Lord, and He heard me, and delivered me from all my fears.
- Psalm 56:3-4 – Whenever I am afraid, I will trust you. In God (I will praise His Word), In God I have put my trust; I will not fear. What can flesh do to me?
- Psalm 66:10-12 – For You, O God, have tested us; You have refined us as silver is refined. You brought us into the net; You laid affliction on our backs. You have caused me to ride over our heads; We went through fire and through water; but you brought us out to rich fulfillment. [emphasis mine]
I typed these out instead of looking them up and copying and pasting because I needed them. I needed to be reminded of God’s goodness and faithfulness.
So what is the solution to fear?
For me, it is praise. Worship. Prayer. All of these. Simply a reminder that God is my protector. He knows my ins and outs, my foibles, my fears, my sins, and HE LOVES ME ANYWAY. That doesn’t always vanquish the fear, but it does allow me to FOCUS on the Lord and not on my current issues.
I pray y’all are doing well. Please let me know if you need prayer. You can use the contact form above or e-mail me at ginger dot solomon at gingersolomon dot com *you know the drill about how that should look*.