THE FOLLOWING WAS WRITTEN FOR 11/25/12 OUR DAILY BREAD BY: Jennifer Benson Schuldt:
When my daughter exclaimed, “Mommy, a bug!” I looked where she was pointing and saw the largest spider I have ever encountered outside of a pet shop. Both the spider and I knew that he would not be allowed to stay in our house. And yet, as I faced him, I found I could not take one step closer to end the standoff. My pulse quickened. I swallowed and gave myself a pep-talk. Still, fear kept me frozen in place.
Fear is powerful; it can override logical thinking and produce irrational behavior. Thankfully, Christians don’t have to let fear of anything—people, situations, or even spiders—rule our actions. We can declare, “Whenever I am afraid, I will trust in [God]” (Ps. 56:3).
Taking this stand against fear is consistent with the Bible’s instruction to “trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding” (Prov. 3:5). Our own understanding may lead us to overestimate the object of our fear and underestimate God’s power. When we are afraid, we can depend on God’s understanding (Isa. 40:28) and trust in His love for us that “casts out fear” (1 John 4:18). The next time fear creeps into your life, don’t panic. God can be trusted in the darkness.
Into His hands I lay the fears that haunt me,
The dread of future ills that may befall;
Into His hands I lay the doubts that taunt me,
And rest securely, trusting Him for all. —Christiansen
Trusting God’s faithfulness dispels our fearfulness.
READ: Psalm 56
56 Be merciful unto me, O God: for man would swallow me up; he fighting daily oppresseth me.
2 Mine enemies would daily swallow me up: for they be many that fight against me, O thou most High.
3 What time I am afraid, I will trust in thee.
4 In God I will praise his word, in God I have put my trust; I will not fear what flesh can do unto me.
5 Every day they wrest my words: all their thoughts are against me for evil.
6 They gather themselves together, they hide themselves, they mark my steps, when they wait for my soul.
7 Shall they escape by iniquity? in thine anger cast down the people, O God.
8 Thou tellest my wanderings: put thou my tears into thy bottle: are they not in thy book?
9 When I cry unto thee, then shall mine enemies turn back: this I know; for God is for me.
10 In God will I praise his word: in the Lord will I praise his word.
11 In God have I put my trust: I will not be afraid what man can do unto me.
12 Thy vows are upon me, O God: I will render praises unto thee.
13 For thou hast delivered my soul from death: wilt not thou deliver my feet from falling, that I may walk before God in the light of the living?