08/19/19 Fear?

READING: Psalms 46-50, Romans 9:6-33

What frightens you? Sickness? The dark? Crowds? Storms? Dogs? Loneliness? Death?

Prior to my becoming a volunteer firefighter years ago, I strongly feared heights. I simply wouldn’t put myself at a height that made me feel like I was certain to fall. Firefighting forced me to push beyond those fears, but I still don’t like the queasy feeling that develops when I look down from afar. I’ve also always feared snakes—and not for theological reasons! I just think they’re ugly and frightening. 

I wonder, then, how you and I would respond if the following happened: “the earth trembles and the mountains topple into the depths of the seas, though its water roars and foams and the mountains quake with its turmoil” (Psa 46:2-3). I can’t help but think that fear would grip us, at least as long the trembling and quaking lasted. The whole picture is an alarming one.

The psalmist used this picture, though, to make a different point – that is, to remind us that our security rests in God, “our refuge and strength, a helper who is always found in times of trouble” (Psa 46:1). He who controls the world He created reigns over all, and we need not be afraid. It is indeed the case that, as the psalmist spoke in the refrains in this poem, “The Lord of Armies is with us; the God of Jacob is our stronghold” (Psa 46:7, 11).

PRAYER: “Thank You, God, for being my refuge. Help me to give You all my fears today.”   

TOMORROW’S READING:  Psalms 51-55, Romans 10