The Lord is my light and my salvation – whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life – of whom shall I be afraid?
Psalm 27:1, NIV*
Take fear out of the equation, and how much differently would we act?
Some upstanding citizens would become successful criminals without a healthy fear holding them back.
Most of us would be calmer, not so guarded. We could trust and not feel the need to protect our interests. We could be ourselves without being concerned about mockery. We could tell others about this wonderful Jesus who rescued us, and not worry about rejection.
In this world, dangers abound and a healthy fear can keep us safe. Grace Fox points out in Moving from Fear to Freedom that the upside to fear is how it can point us to active trust in God.
As we learn to trust God, get to know His character and prove His trustworthiness, the challenge is to let Him be our protector instead of protecting ourselves. Not that we’ll abandon common sense and start walking in front of buses or into dark alleys, but will we drop the barriers we’ve learned to hide behind?
Will we concentrate more on others’ unspoken needs and less on our own security? More on how God might be nudging us to get involved, and less on what it would cost?
Swindling, mockery and rejection happen, and we’re to be “wise as serpents, and harmless as doves“. Jesus wasn’t blind to the dangers He faced, but He “entrusted Himself to Him who judges justly” and did what the Father had for Him to do. We need to do the same.
Father, You are our strong tower, our shelter and our refuge. Nothing and no one can snatch us from Your hand. Give us courage and grace to live Your rescue, not shrinking back but trusting our hearts and souls to You and following where You lead. Teach us to hear and obey Your voice, because of Jesus.