One of Satan’s key strategies is fear. We worry about the repercussions at work if we follow God faithfully. We dread the cost to our relationships if we choose not to lie or gossip. We sense God calling us to minister to a broken world, but we fear for our safety or that of our family.
When challenges come—and that is “when” and not “if”—where do we go? How do we prevent fear from terrorizing us and rendering us incapable of fulfilling our calling as followers of Christ?
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego were confronted by the real possibility of death by fire when they were told to bow down and worship an idol. Their response in Daniel 3:17-18 provides an extraordinary example of how to respond to persecution and fear: “Our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the furnace of blazing fire ... but even if He does not ... we are not going to serve your gods” (NASB).
When fear comes, acknowledge God as your protector, your shield, your deliverer, and your loving Heavenly Father. God loves us so much He gave His only Son to die for us (John 3:16), conquering evil and the grave, “overcom[ing] the world” and its troubles (John 16:33). He is all powerful. He is able to protect us from the brokenness of this world—but what if the outcome of His deliverance and protection is different than what we desire? Even if: Trust Him. When you don’t understand, trust Him anyway, because He gave His precious Son for you.
When challenges come, we have a choice. If we choose to see life through the lens of our circumstances, all may look hopeless, but if we look through the lens of God’s sacrificial, overwhelming love for us, trust will flood our souls and displace the lie of fear.
Father, we know there is no fear in love (1 John 4:18). May we be so filled with Your love that fear is displaced in our lives. Fill us with Your peace even in the face of persecution or trials. Help us remember that You are with us.
by Durwood Snead, HOPE board member