Delivered from Fear

Have you ever experienced an internal conflict?  A relationship that was confusing, a looming decision that was unclear, or emotions that seemed to contradict each other?  You are not alone.

Earlier this morning I came across a verse in the Bible that I had highlighted three years ago. When I read the verse again today, I was instantly transported back in time to the situation in which the verse spoke to me so meaningfully.  It was Psalm 34:4

“I sought the Lord, and he answered me; he delivered me from all my fears.”

Three years ago, we had just made the decision for me to accept a new job and move our family from the city that we had grown up in.  Away from family, away from deep friendships, and toward the unknown.  While I was thoroughly convinced that the decision was correct, there were many uncertainties about the future, and when I was honest with myself, I knew that I was nervous at times.

It was at that point that the words, “he delivered me from all my fears” leapt off the page and gave me great comfort.

Now … fast forward to this spring.  Again, I find myself with a sense of nervousness about the future.  Not for myself this time, but for the ministry that I lead.  In recent weeks, much of my prayer life has centered on the faithfulness and sovereignty of God, and I have repeated that phrase countless times. 

You might think that fear would no longer be an issue for me in at this point in my journey.  And I really didn’t think that it was.  Until, that is, I read Psalm 34:4 this morning and tension within me revealed itself.  One powerful emotion quickly emerged, and with almost the same speed, so did the opposite emotion.

Like a trigger being pulled, I instantly realized that yes, I was deeply fearful about the future of the ministry.  Whether the fear was rational or not was irrelevant.  The feeling of fear was real.  But then, like an immediate echo, I felt an overwhelming sense of deep peace that dissolved my surprising fear.  Again, as in the past, the faithful and sovereign Lord “delivered me from all of my fears”!

So … what about you?  What are the fears that you need to be delivered from?  Do you have a leadership decision that is paralyzing you?  How about a relationship issue?  Something in your school life?  A parenting challenge?  Does part of your future feel “unknown” at this point?  What are you fearful of?

Here is my invitation: Dust off your old copy of the Bible (or search the Bible online for the first time) and find the book of Psalms.  Read through a few of them, maybe one a day or a few each day, and let them speak to your heart.  Don’t overanalyze what you read; just listen.  Listen for what God might be saying to you today.  You just may hear the words of comfort and hope that you need!

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2 Replies to “Delivered from Fear”

  1. Thanks for your personal reflections. I recognize that this season has been very challenging for you. I’m grateful to read your experience of God’s peace. I too am entering a new season – retirement. For me, retirement must have purpose and fruit, but these are not guaranteed. When I told an acquaintance a few days ago that I had been retired for three weeks, he responded, “So you haven’t been retired long enough to fail at it.” We both laughed. Despite the laugh, I know I must remain in Jesus (John 15) in order to experience His guidance and His fruitfulness in the investment of my life in His kingdom in this season of unemployed service. As my pastor reminded us yesterday, remaining in Jesus is a posture, not a task. That’s my goal for this new day – for each new day – to stay in contact contact with Him to enjoy Him and bear His fruit, without fear.

    1. Thanks, Art. With your heart for God, people, and ministry, I am looking forward to seeing what this next chapter of your life looks like! 🙂

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