By Larry H. Campbell
BIBLE MEDITATION: “Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, Yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand” Isaiah 41:10 (NKJV)
DEVOTIONAL THOUGHT: What is your greatest fear for the approaching days? Do you fear failure, defeat, sickness or loss? Depending on the person, the future brings with it the propensity for fear and caution. Fear is regular with most of us. We wrestled with fear when we were children. Then it was fear of darkness and monsters like the Boogie Mann. When we were teens, we were no longer afraid of the Boogie Man but we were afraid of being rejected by our friends or being the object of jokes. We also feared any kind of humiliation and we were plagued by the question, What if I mess up? When we reached adulthood, our fears grew up too. Our Boogie Man has become the fear of disease, death, financial problems and other storms.
What does it mean to have No fear? It means the elimination of general anxiousness and specific apprehensions. In Hebrew the word for fear used in Psalm 27:1 is Ary which means to stand in awe of something. In The New Testament the word for fear is Phobia which is the fear of a specific thing. The person who stands in awe of another force is defeated before they began. That’s why boxers stare down their opponents at the center of the ring to make them stand in awe of them. A person who is generally fearless can suddenly become fearful in a Phobic situation. There are over 700 kinds of phobias: Acrophobia, the fear of high places; Claustrophobia, the fear of tight close places; Agoraphobia, the fear of open places, Ergophobia, the fear of work; Phobophobia, the fear of fear itself. These are the kinds of fears that can reveal a woman strong enough to fight off a male attacker, but will run and stand on top of a table at the sight of a mouse. It’s the fear that makes a man laugh at the face of danger but whimper when he sees a spider because he has a fear of spiders.
ACTION POINT: If you are to succeed in life, you must learn to face your fears. Many are afraid that they will fail and become the object of ridicule of their friends. We are afraid that we may make a mistake. So that business never gets started. That expansion never happens; that relationship never begins; or never ends the way we know it should. Because we are afraid, we often missed opportunities God presents to us. Yet, when we are engaging in a godly opportunity we have the assurance that he will be with us. Isaiah 41:10 puts it this way, Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.
Fears hold us back and stands in the way of what God has in store for us. Yet we should hear the words the angels told Zacharias, Fear not. We should hear the words told to the women at the tomb, Fear not. We should hear what was told Joshua at the Jordan, Fear Not. As Christians, we should sing the words of David with great joy, The Lord is my light and my salvation, whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life, of whom shall I be afraid?