From Fear to Focus
It is a rare breed indeed who lives without fear. There is always something in our lives that cause us to be afraid. When we were children our parents would calm us and soothe our fears away, but the fears of childhood are eclipsed by those of adulthood and take on momentous proportions, leaving us with bouts of depression. However, we need to shift our focus away from ourselves and our fears. Jesus never ceases to counsel his disciples not to be afraid. “O ye of little faith”, He would chastise them.
In Matthew 14:25-33 the story is told that when Peter saw Jesus walking on the water, he asked Jesus to bid him to come to Him. As Peter started walking towards Jesus the large waves billowing around him so alarmed him that he shifted his eyes away from his Lord. No longer was Jesus the focus of his attention but on those threatening waves and Peter found himself sinking. He cried out, “Lord, save me.” Immediately, Jesus stretched out his hand and caught him, saying to him, “O man of little faith, why do you doubt?”
“Without faith it is impossible to please God.” (Hebrews 11:6) Faith is the key. We need to have faith in Jesus to remove unnecessary fear from our lives, fear that may never materialize, fear that saps our energy and weakens our resolve. We need faith to keep our focus on Jesus, for without Him we can do nothing (John 15:5)
Marcie was a rebellious teenager who decided that her way was the only way. With a mother who scoffed at Christians, Marcie was prone to follow that path. However, her grandmother who had taken care of her when she was a baby, was not prepared to give up on her. She prayed at every opportunity and whenever there was an occasion of their meeting would bring into the conversation something about God’s goodness and his saving grace. Marcie remembered an occasion when her grandmother told her of two young people who had given their testimony at a Church service that it was the prayers of their grandmothers that brought them back from the downhill road they were pursuing. They both asked the grandmothers in the congregation never to stop praying for their grandchildren.
It was not long after that that Marcie visited her grandmother and in conversation asked her to pray for her. There were issues in her life she was not happy about. The grandmother was happy to do so and was pleased at the change she was now seeing in Marcie. She thereupon gave her the verse from Isaiah 41:10 “fear not, for I am with you, be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you and I will uphold you with my victorious right hand” Whenever fear begins to raise its threatening head we can all take comfort from these reassuring words of God.
Phyllis M. Inniss
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Fear not appears in 63 exact phrases in the KJV Bible. I think God wants us to trust in Him and not fear. Loved this article.