What Shall We Say About…
In Fear, Take Heart!
By Nancy Johnston
Over the past month we’ve all been faced with it: Fear. Fear of the unknown. Fear of change. Fear of going places.
I don’t know about you, but I’ve been inundated with emails and articles about the Coronavirus. The more I read the more I felt myself getting overwhelmed and anxious. What was causing all this fear? It could be a thousand things I suppose. I could be afraid of getting the virus or of unknowingly infecting someone I love. I could be afraid of the effect this pandemic is having on our economy.
But, honestly, the thing that grips me most right now is the lack of control I feel. I fear the unknown. I hate not being able to plan out what next week or next month will look like. Too many unknowns.
In the midst of all the chaos and uncertainties and changes I had to stop and ask myself one very important question: “What am I going to focus on?”
In the midst of it all I could hear Him whispering to me – “Take heart, be encouraged! I realized that if I focus on what the world was telling me I was only going to feel overwhelmed and discouraged.
He was reminding me, “I’m your Unchanging Shepherd leading you every step of the way. I am your Giver of Peace that surpasses all your limited understanding. I am All Knowing of what the future will hold, nothing surprises Me. I am All Powerful to cure every sickness and disease. I am Faithful, to the very end.”
Then He reminded me of Peter’s story in Matthew 14:25-33. Just like Peter, when Jesus called him out on the water, if I take my eyes off Him I will surely sink. The chaos of the storm around me should not cause me to lose sight of Him. And it should definitely not change my perspective of Who He is. He is the One Constant in my life and how I respond to the storm is a reflection of Who I believe Him to be.
A friend of mine gave me an analogy that has stuck with me for years. When you squeeze an orange, lemon juice doesn’t come out, does it? No, it’s an orange. You will always get orange juice because that is what is inside.
So, when I’m faced with the pressure of life and it “squeezes me”, what comes out? The answer is raw and simple, what is truly in my heart will come out. Do I really trust Him or do I live in fear?
Faith is active; it meditates on Truth. In order to replace fear with faith, we have to break our gaze off the tossing waves of worry in this world and return it to Christ. Like He did for Peter, His hand will hold ours even as we walk on swirling water.
Will you pray this now with me?
Dear Heavenly Father, You tell us over and over in Your Word, “Fear not!” Help us to do so. Help us to remember that You never forsake us and are fully trustworthy.
As panic surrounds us, may Your peace that surpasses understanding fill our hearts and minds. May we be voices of light and reason, as we walk by faith.
We ask for Your protective grace and mercy over our families and those who are most vulnerable, and for endurance and wisdom upon our leaders and health care professionals.
Father, we know You are over this, and will use this for ultimate good, according to the riches of Your glory. Help us, in fear, to take heart. In Jesus’s Name, Amen
© 2020 Nancy Johnston, Family Disciple Me
As the body of Christ, this season is our chance to rise up and live for more than ourselves. In Jesus’ Name, we can love and help others just like God has loved and helped us.
The current coronavirus pandemic is a strategic time to disciple our kids about FEAR! How God’s Word says we should handle fear in our lives, whatever that fear is for each of us.
Kids, today we pray. TODAY WE PRAY.
It’s pretty clear what God wants us to do during time of pestilence and disease. He wants us to fall on our faces and cry out to Him, in humility, repentance and faith. So let’s pray today!!!
How do we translate our relationship with the Lord to those He’s entrusted to us? How do we speak Him into their lives? It’s an outgrowth of Seeking Him.
I have never been pushed so far outside my comfort zone and for so long. Yet, I learned during my personal ‘Crucible of Starvation and Sleep Deprivation’ that the darkest and coldest valleys provide the greatest opportunity to reinvent ourselves, grow, and move closer to God.
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