August 13 / 2020
Devotional by Emily Roberts
“The oldest and strongest emotion of mankind is fear, and the oldest and strongest kind of fear is, fear of the unknown”― H.P. Lovecraft,Supernatural Horror in Literature
The future can be a scary place if you let your mind spend much time there. There is no policy that provides peace, health, happiness, or security in the days ahead. Dwell on the innumerable ways a person might meet his end at any given moment, and the only place you will feel safe will be back in bed with your head under the covers!Most of the time, most of us are able to move forward, knowing that we are generally safe and that the day will most likely pass uneventfully. But what about those times when we feel uncertain? How can we quiet our concerns and preserve our peace when our sense of security is shaken?First, it’s good to go to God with our fears. I Peter 5:7 says, “Casting the [a]whole of your care [all your anxieties, all your worries, all your concerns, [b]once and for all] on Him, for He cares for you affectionately and cares about you [c]watchfully.” (AMPC) He loves us. He’s watching over us. We can leave our entire list of concerns with Him and never worry about it again because He is handling it all. According to this verse, we should be able to identify stressors, take them to the Lord, and lead a completely worry-free life. But “letting go and letting God” isn’t always so easy, is it? The truth is, it can be hard to trust someone ( or Someone) if we don’t know them very well. That’s why, I think it can also be helpful, when we are feeling fearful, to establish God’s character for ourselves. For instance, did you know that, at any given moment, God can tell you exactly how many hairs you have on your head? (Luke 12:7) Gill’s Exposition of the Entire Bible explains that each of God’s followers is so precious to Him that “…even the very hairs of their head, and not one of them could fall to the ground, any more than a sparrow; or be plucked off by men, without the knowledge and will of God; so careful is the providence of God, of all his people….” It is amazing to think that the Omnipotent God of the Universe cares for our physical well-being so affectionately and watchfully! But He also cares about our emotional well-being. Do you know what command in the Bible is given with the most frequency? It’s “Do not be afraid.” It’s in the Old Testament and the New. It’s in the books of law, history, poetry and wisdom. It’s in the gospels, the epistles, the acts of the apostles, and Revelation. Corrie Ten Boom said, “Never be afraid to trust an unknown future to a known God.” When we know Him, we know we can trust HIm.Another way to quiet our qualms is to take stock of what we’ve got. If the future doesn’t look so bright, focus on today. What is your reality right now? Look around and see what’s good about this moment. I like the way the Living Bible says it: “So don’t be anxious about tomorrow. God will take care of your tomorrow too. Live one day at a time.” Matthew 6:34
One more thing. If you’re wound up with worry, look at your kids, or anyone’s kids. While you are fretting, they are frolicking. While you are dwelling on difficulties, they are dancing in the dandelions. While you are choking on your cares, they are completely calm and care-free. Kids never worry about the future. And, really, neither should we.
So round up those doubts that want to dominate your brain space, and drop them on the doorstep of the Lord Who loves you. Take stock of everything that is okay today. Then, join the kids for a popsicle on the porch. God’s taking care of you today, and “…God will take care of your tomorrow, too