Are you crippled by fear? Are you consumed with worry over losing a loved one? Are you or a loved one struggling with an unresolved health issue? Do you fear failure or the thought that you’ll never be “good enough?” Do you carry around the weight that something bad is going to happen to you? Have you been struggling with infertility and wondering if you will ever get pregnant? Are you weary from the adoption process and wonder if you’ll ever be chosen? Do you stay up late at night worried about your child getting sick? Do you fear losing your job or the inability to provide well for your family?
I can relate to some of these fears. At times, I’ve felt consumed by them. When I was in my third year of college I had a mini-stroke. It took weeks before we discovered why the seemingly healthy 22 year old suffered one. There was so much uncertainty surrounding those weeks. Test after test, the results of one test would soon lead to another and dozens of doctors from different specialties came in and out of my hospital room asking the same questions. When your health is starting to look more like an anomaly and an unsolvable puzzle, fear can start to creep in. But, God met me in that cold hospital room. God was there with me when I discovered I would be having open-heart surgery due to the tumor growing on my mitral valve. God was there with me when I was told this would affect my ability to have biological children. God was there with me when thoughts and fears of what the outcome of surgery would entail for my future. And as I was looking out the hospital window the night before surgery, my heavenly Father lovingly guided my heart to a place of peace and trust.
I’ve been brought to my knees many times throughout my life, as I’ve struggled with fear surrounding my circumstances. I wanted to share a little tried and true “road map” for your soul, that’s been extremely helpful to me in fighting and overcoming fear. I pray it brings your weary heart to a place of rest.
Share your fears with God. Acknowledge them and lay them all out before Him. Every thought. Every feeling. Don’t hold back. No feeling is too big for Him to handle. I’ve found it helpful for me to even write them down in my journal or say them out loud in prayer.
Remember who your Father is. Ask God to help you remember who He is. Lately I’ve been reminding myself that God is Most High. He is supreme and above all things-our fears, our health issues, our struggles, the unknown. He is bigger. He is greater.
God is our helper. Psalm 121:1-8
God is our comforter. Psalm 34:18
God is our strength. Psalm 46:1
God is our hope. Psalm 33:20
God is our peace. Philippians 4:7
Meditate on God’s promises.We have access to the very Word of God. The Bible says, “All scriptures are God-breathed” (2 Timothy 3). His Word is full of rich truths and promises for His children. I’ll be the first to admit that sometimes it’s a struggle for me to make time to do this. I get so frustrated with myself because I know The Word is exactly what my soul needs. His Word is life giving. His Word is transformative. His Word is powerful. His Word speaks truth to your fears. In a world that is vying for our attention and our time, in a world that is spitting lies into our face, we need to fight for time in God’s word. It must be a priority. But first we must ask God to do what only He can: create in us a desire to read it. Through the years I’ve realized this is not something I can do a part from God’s grace.
Isaiah 41: 10 “ So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”
Psalm 91:4 “He will cover you with his feathers. He will shelter you with his wings. His faithful promises are your armor and protection.”
Philippians 4:19 “And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus.”
Psalm 23: 4 “Even though I walk through the darkest valley,I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.’’
Reflect on the times you’ve seen God’s faithfulness in your life and in the lives of others. When you are struggling with fear it can be very tempting to go inward and get stuck in your head. Reflecting on God’s faithfulness can remind your heart to hope, as you remember all the ways that God has provided for your family and others.
Ask God what He wants you to learn through this. Fear can be a byproduct of the unknown. But, God wastes nothing. Asking God to help me find His purpose through this “thing” I fear most, the pain, the unknowns and suffering (and not a part from them) has been transformative for my soul.
Cancer multiple times, health issues, open-heart surgery, infertility, miscarriage-I know what it’s like to be overwhelmed with fear and the unknown. I know what it’s like to feel like you are drowning in your circumstances. But, it was through these challenges I became more keenly aware of my need for something bigger than myself. It was through the fire (not a part from it) that I came to know the depths of God’s grace, love and kindness and learned there is no end to it. Joni Erickson Tada said it well, “My weakness, that is, my quadriplegia, is my greatest asset because it forces me into the arms of Christ every single morning when I get up.” Pray that God would help you see His purpose through the unknown, through the struggle, through the pain.
Does fear still creep in? Absolutely. Some days more than others. But the trials I’ve encountered earth side have kept me closer to Jesus, right underneath His wings, which I’m continually reminded is the safest and the best place for me to be. When you know your soul is secure in Jesus Christ, ultimately nothing can overcome you-not even the thing you fear most. You can look that “thing” you fear most straight in the eyes and say with complete confidence, “My God is bigger.”
“For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”