It is horrible to imagine that some of us live in a constant state of debilitating fear. Some of our fears may be based on past experiences so traumatizing that they defy words. Other fear is so deeply embedded in our past that we do not ever remember its roots: it’s just there. Some people believe fear is actually here, right now, waiting to walk through that door, or when the phone rings, or in a chance encounter. Some of us fear future events—some founded, some dreaded, some, only imaginary.
Many of us carry fears that are irrational phobias; fear of flying, heights, being enclosed in a small space, spiders, of men, of women. They are fears with little basis in the real world—but they are real enough to those who have them. And that is real enough to affect how we live and move every day.
Of course, few of us are like Nik Wallenda, casually strolling through life as if it were a tightrope over Niagara Falls. We’re somewhere in between—taking calculated risks, pushing forward with fear and trepidation. And rightly so; it’s a cruel world out there. Everywhere! Dangerous.
Fear can often be conquered through trust. Where do we place our trust? What constitutes a safe, person, a safe faith, a safe place? A platoon leader, a counselor, a drinking buddy (or, someone for tea), home? There are so few places of safety these days; even fewer safe people. All of us, no matter the extent of our fear, need to establish a relationship with someone with whom we are safe. We need safe places as well. A safe faith is for those who know they are secure in the God who made them, no matter what. The fear is still very present; but somehow it is different for people of faith.
The only way to overcome fear is to face it (preferably with your safe friend), head-on or gradually, and begin to establish a trust in the God who has made you. Deep fears are the hardest to conquer with trust; but if you are not pushing against them, and laying them before the God of the Universe, they will conquer you. Do NOT let them. You are made of better stuff. You need not do it alone, either. There is always a God in the heavens who calls you—
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.