The silence in that room made it hard to breathe. She pressed the ultrasound tool firm against my tummy and kept moving left and right, right and left to no avail. There wasn’t even a flutter of movement on that monitor. Our world collapsed into tears in just a few little minutes. This was the second time in a span of three months that the screen stood lifeless before us. We were three babies in to this whole parenting thing and no one could have seen it coming. The full knowledge of all the moments I would miss with these two sweet babies of ours filled my heart and the sobbing engulfed me, tears came easily. I remember kneeling on top of my bed wailing to the Lord, because experiencing death up close and personal upends you. Turns life in such a way that you’re desperate for Jesus. I was desperate before, but afterward I knew just how desperate I was.
Fear slips in quietly and locks the door behind itself.
Life has a way of weakening defenses. It has this way of exposing how much truth the heart has really absorbed and how much it’s missing. Your story doesn’t have to have near this much drama for fear and anxiety to be sins of yours. These companions travel into any place that is not filled up with trust in our good Father. They will stay in the places of your soul that lack faith. Little else, ushers anxiety & fear to the door of your heart like motherhood does. It begins at first pregnancy test and as far as I can see doesn’t stop until you unlock the door and let the Spirit of Christ come and blow those nagging sins out of you by the breath of His Word.
Fear is a controlling sin. It will dictate what you will and will not do. It holds its victim captive to its will. You cannot at once be full of anxiety and fear and walk in the will of God. I do think the enemy of our souls uses such sins to keep us from the will of God. To walk with God requires faith, trust, resolved belief in His goodness, and some of us I dare say have lost quite a bit of our faith along the way.
Fear comes for all sorts of reasons, perhaps your child suffers with chronic illness or a disorder of some kind, maybe it was a car accident you experienced months ago, it could be lingering fear left over from your own childhood, and you’re hoping that your child doesn’t have to repeat the course you took in life. You’re trying to trust, but you’re really more worried than anything else. More often than not, fear is inspired not by what has happened but what might happen. We are plagued endlessly by the “what ifs” of life so much that some of us can barely live life. Whether your fear and anxiety has an identifiable trigger or not, the way it is dealt with is similar. Scripture is sufficient to identify and rebuke and direct us out of our sin. Even so, there are times when professional help is needed to deal with life. I get that. I beg you to seek counseling for the life issues you have. It can be so helpful and life giving to work through these issues with counselors. That said, it remains true, that fear and anxiety only die when we trade them in for a different kind of fear, the fear of the Lord. At the end of the day in order to escape sin we must come the Word of God that frees and heals us. While it may sound like a trite solution; it is the only solution that works and offers lasting victory.
There are Scriptures innumerable that counsel us out of fear and anxiety. Verses reminding us to be strong and courageous. Others that tell us the Lord hasn’t given us a spirit of fear but of power, love, and a sound mind. Favorite verses like cast all your anxieties on the Lord for He cares for you. In these few moments we share together today, I want to share with you a passage I’ve clung to over the years. Sometimes there are real and valid reasons to be afraid, even then the Lord gives us a way out of this temptation. His Word directs us how we should trust in Him in the scary places, in the places we cannot perceive His presence quite as well, in the very places we would prefer to duck tail and run. Listen to this passage with me. God speaks to us here and the author pens,
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? When evildoers assail me to eat up my flesh, my adversaries and foes, it is they who stumble and fall. Though an army encamp against me, my heart shall not fear; though war arise against me, yet I will be confident. One thing have I asked of the LORD, that will I seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the LORD and to inquire in his temple. Psalm 27:1-4
Isn’t this Psalm powerful?! The Psalmist, King David, speaks to his own heart, and he tells his heart the truth. He recounts who the Lord is my light and my salvation and in the verse following the stronghold of my life. He asks Himself this question whom shall I fear? If our Father is as mighty, awe inspiring, and miracle working as we profess what in the flat world are we afraid of? If the Lord who flung the stars in the sky and penned all your days before one of them came to be is the God of your life, seriously, tell me the name of the person you should be afraid of?
Some of us are scared to pieces of other people, worried that someone might glance over at us and judge the way we mommy our children, or the way we handle our daily affais that we just can’t live in the freedom the Father desires for us. We are concerned that we don’t exercise enough. We don’t eat the right things. We don’t wear the right things. We are frantic in heart that someone might notice our failings and mock us, gossip about us. We are torn up in anxiety utterly consumed with what other people say and think.
We have not attended to the Words of God as much as we should.
We have not sought His counsel; we have chosen the fear of man. It’s time to get over that. We are all worked up and worried over what other people think to the end that we can’t even do what God is calling us to do concerning our own callings, and the hilarious thing about it is every single person you’re worrying about isn’t thinking about you, girl, because they are worried too! It’s rare that we are actually in fear for our very lives as the Psalmist is here, but here is a beautiful example the Lord set up for us. Even in the face of life threatening circumstances David still chose to trust God. He obeyed, and we can too.
David spoke to his heart my heart shall not fear; what are you speaking to yours?
Then there’s this incredible part. He moves from dealing with his anxiety and fear by renewing His mind on who the Lord is and asking Himself why in the world would he be afraid to asking just ONE THING. He didn’t ask for the Lord to spare His life. That’s what I would have been asking and you too I venture. He didn’t ask at that moment for the Lord to kill all of His enemies. The Psalmist says he is asking the Lord for just one thing. I think this is the key to all our anxiety.
One thing have I asked of the LORD, that will I seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the LORD and to inquire in his temple. Psalm 27:4
David asked the Lord for Himself. Do you see it there? To dwell in His house all his days, to gaze on His beauty, and to talk to Him.
In the face His fear He asks God for God.