I found it, I found it! I knew it was in the Bible all along but I didn’t know it was there 365 times! That’s once for every day of the year. What is it, you ask? Sorry, I was so excited I forgot to tell you. It says in the Bible, 365 times “do not be afraid.” Now don’t you think if God says it that many times He must be serious about it?
The story is told of Will Rogers who came to his friend, Eddie Cantor, for advice. Will wanted to make some important changes in his act but was worried about the danger of such changes, explaining that he wasn’t sure if they would work. Eddie Cantor’s response was, “Why not go out on a limb? That’s where the fruit is!”
Fear comes in many disguises and forms, worry, concern, fright, dread, panic, alarm, trepidation, apprehension, anxiety, phobias, hesitation, and uneasiness to name a few. The good news is that our Heavenly Father has given us 365 cures for these feelings. Feelings that are really telling God that we do not, cannot or will not trust Him to take care of or protect us from them. Because we believe these lies that Satan plants in our heads, we are sinning against God, pure and simple.
Now don’t get me wrong, here. There are times when fear is a good thing to have otherwise we would let the kids play with fire, rattlesnakes and jump off rooftops. Fear alerts us of danger, the smell of smoke in the house, screeching tires when the kids are outside and when you hear the severe weather sirens go off.
There is also the Fear of the Lord which is translated both as a “Reverent Awe or Wonder” as in our worship of, or attitude toward, God and the “Righteous Anger” of God.
The most common fears I think most Christians have are in obeying the promptings of the Lord. You know the ones that say “Trust Me, I have something better for you”? “But, Lord, I already have a job!” “Lord, you want me to go where and do what?” “Lord, it’s my last six bucks and You want me to give it him/her?”
There is a great quote I came across recently that goes something like this:
“Sometimes I would like to ask God why He allows poverty, suffering, and injustice when He could do something about it.”
“Well, why don’t you ask Him?”
“Because I’m afraid He would ask me the same question.”
Folks, He is asking us the same question.
I’m not going to tell you that all you need to do is pray for forgiveness and all your fear will disappear. For some of you that may be all it will take. For the rest of us it will take constant prayer and learning to trust deep in our hearts that God will deliver us from our fears. I choose to see it as a tool God is using to increase my faith in Him.
Again it’s all about our attitude. We can sit on our pity-pots and say poor me, I’m so afraid or we can pull up our big girl pants and claim one of those 365 verses like 2 Timothy 1:7 “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” New King James Version (NKJV)
We have confidence and find compassion in prayer. 1 John 5:14-15 says “Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him.” (NKJV)
The Father does not want us to be afraid of anything, the cautionary fear that leads us to awareness, yes, but not the fear of anything else. The Bible also says in John 16:33 “These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” (NKJV)
Come on, what are you waiting for? You have 362 more verses to look up if you need them. I find biblegateway.com has an excellent tool for doing word searches.
May God bless you as you learn to trust Him more in this and other areas of your life.