“Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”
Deuteronomy 6:31, NIV
From Genesis to Revelation, God exhorts believers not to be afraid. Join me this week as we venture to be fearless in a world packed with reasons to fear.
Roadblocks to Peace
“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
John 16:33, NIV
A telephone ringing at 2:15 in the morning is never a good thing.
Clumsily snatching the handset from its cradle, my husband blurted “Hello” while I tried to discern the panic-stricken voice on the other end of the line. It was my niece. My sister was being transported to the hospital by ambulance. There was an issue with her heart.
Fifteen minutes later, I was on the road to the hospital twenty miles away. In a tunnel of darkness illuminated only by my headlights, I was gripped with fear. I begged God to grant me His peace, but my thoughts continued to outrun my high beams, filling my mind with worst-case scenarios. I worked to redirect my thinking, but this Bible study leader, this writer of devotions couldn’t pull up a single verse of Scripture. Desperate to hear God’s voice, I knew I had to make a concerted effort to relax my body and calm my thoughts. I took several deep breaths and talked myself down. Soon, I heard: I will never leave you or forsake you.
“I know that, Lord, but I need more than that. I need to know my sister will be okay.”
I continued to listen for His words. These came: Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths (Proverbs 3:5–6, KJV).
“I’m trying, Lord. I’m trying.”
I wanted to pray for God’s will in the situation, but I was afraid of what that would be. The reality was, I wanted what I wanted.
When I arrived at the emergency room, the receptionist directed me to Room 10. I could see it on the opposite side of the nurse’s station. The door of the room was open, and a nurse stood with her back to me at the foot of the bed. She was blocking my view of my sister.
As I rushed around the desk, a male nurse stepped into the middle of the aisle, keeping me from going any farther. I feared the worst. My heart raced. I looked straight into his eyes, trying to read his expression.
“What’s the matter?” I blurted.
“Everything’s okay. Her vitals are good. The technician is taking an X-ray, and I don’t want you to interfere.”
Sheesh! Be still my heart.
Tomorrow I’ll conclude my story, but first: how do you respond to unwelcome roadblocks that hold you hostage in the darkness?
If you’re struggling now with fear, make a deliberate effort to calm your spirit and listen for God’s voice. He wants to protect us from unwarranted fears. Open His Word and ask Him to speak to you about your situation. Tomorrow, I’ll share God’s words to me regarding this dark night of my soul.