Devotions

The Immobility of Fear

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For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways. Psalm 91:11. 

There is a new topic in the news perpetually—the coronavirus. This virus, or merely the thought of the virus, is shaping the lives of North American’s and the world.

Last week I went to Costco to buy garbage bags for my church. Upon arrival, the man at the front door who checks-in customers with a membership card said, “we are out of water, paper towel, toilet paper, etc. He said this to everyone walking in the door. Without saying it, this man was basically telling me, “Everyone is panicked and bought supplies because they do not know what the future holds.” But does anyone?

Costco was overwhelmingly packed. I stood in line with hundreds of other people for over an hour. I was in close proximity with so many men and women and I could hear their conversations. The word coronavirus was spoken over and over, and over again.

Grocery stores have reached their maximum capacity, too. One thing that has been overwhelmingly clear to me is the length people will go when they feel panicked. I have witnessed the veneer of successful, wealthy people wash away when they openly fight for toilet paper.

This world is desperate.

Maybe they think they are desperate for more hand sanitizer, caned goods, paper towels (all of those things are important in times like these), but the thing they need most is a relationship with Jesus.

During the “what ifs” in life, we need to know that there is peace in the midst of the storm. We need to know that we do not walk alone through the valley of the shadow of death, because our God will walk with us. Would it be amazing if the verse said, fly over the valley? Yes, that would be amazing. However, it says, through… but, THOU ART WITH ME.

I was reading an article by Dave Ramsey, who is a Christian financial coach, and he writes, “Just saying it (coronavirus) out loud is enough to make you want to grab a mask, wash your hands, and become a hermit. But you know what’s even more dangerous than a virus? Fear. That will creep in, eat away at you, and cause more destruction than the threat of any illness ever could.”

https://www.daveramsey.com/blog/how-an-epidemic-can-affect-the-economy

Fear immobilizes a person.

I’m not saying that we should not take the necessary precautions to keep our families and ourselves safe and healthy, but I am suggesting that allowing fear to rule your life will affect you mentally, physically, and spiritually.

Matthew 6:33–34 encourages us to,  “seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”

I love these scriptures because they tell us…

If you have time to worry, then you have time to pray.

If you are encumbered with fear because of what you have heard in the media, give that to the Lord. Take it to God in prayer and allow Him to bring peace into your life. The “what if”questions that replay in our minds can paralyze us from growing because they are questions that fester worry.

Please prepare for the future and do everything you can do to keep you and your family safe. But, when fear tries to rule your tomorrows, rebuke it and then turn your worries in to prayers.

Prayer: Lord, I cast all of my questions, all my fears, and all of my worry to You. I desire to live a life of peace, regardless of what is happening in the world around me. Help me to feed my spiritual side more than what I feed my flesh. I pray that you would give wisdom to the President, senators, mayors, pastors, and leader in this nation. I pray that You would go to the grieving families that have lost loved ones this past month, and carry them in your peace. When fear immobilizes me from moving forward, help me to rebuke fear so I can move forward in Your will and experience Your perfect love. In Jesus name. Amen.

 

Angela Overton

Angela Overton is a lover of words, nature, and coffee. She is an ordained minister with the UPCI, has a Masters Degree in Theology, and loves to teach Bible studies. She and her amazing husband, Michael, pastor in Silver Spring, Maryland.

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