Fear - The One Year Book of Hope


Happy are those who fear the LORD. They do not fear bad news; they confidently trust the LORD to care for them. They are confident and fearless and can face their foes triumphantly. Psalm 112:1, 7-8

Recently, when David and I were sharing our story in front of a group, I got a question that stumped me. A woman asked me, “How did you deal with your fear?” All I could think to say in response was, “I felt afraid.”

But the more I thought about it, I realized that while we may feel afraid, fear does not have to have the final word on our emotions and outlook. It doesn’t have to deaden our capacity for joy. In Isaiah 41:10, God says, “Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you. I will help you. I will uphold you with my victorious right hand.” Can you step back from your fearful situation to see what God wants you to see about him here? Can you see his all-encompassing presence and hear his unfailing promise? This vision is our secret weapon in the battle against overwhelming fear.

“I am with you.” He is by your side in the operating room, at the graveside, in the courtroom, in your aching loneliness.

“I am your God.” He is over you, watching carefully, covering you, caring for you personally.

“I will strengthen you.” He makes his presence known within you as his Holy Spirit gives you supernatural courage and strength to face what you never wanted to face and what you never dreamed you could face.

“I will help you.” He is all around you, holding you up in your weakness, lifting you up from your hopelessness, and carrying you through your crisis.

“I will uphold you.” He is the sure and solid foundation underneath you, the strong arms that will never let you fall.

Can you see him? Embracing this reality of his presence in and around you is the secret to facing a fearful future with godly courage. As God becomes larger in your estimation and closer in your experience, fear will lose its power and loosen its grip. Paralyzing fear and genuine faith simply cannot coexist. It’s not the amount of faith that gives us confidence in crisis, but the object of our faith that calms our fears. Faith enables us to say with the psalmist, “When I am afraid, I put my trust in you” (Psalm 56:3).

Ever-present God, my eyes have been opened to see you over me, around me, beside me, inside me, and underneath me. The reality of your presence calms my fears and gives me courage.


Read Exodus 20:18-21. How does fearing God help us with our other fears?

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