The following column is an opinion piece and reflects the views of only the author and not those of The Georgia Virtue.
By: Dr. William F. Holland Jr., minister, chaplain, and author of the column series ‘Living on Purpose’. You can read more about the Christian life and see other works by Dr. Holland at billyhollandministries.com
Like you, I’ve been afraid a few times in my life. There are different types of fear and one is being afraid of something we believe is going to harm us. This is a paralyzing and dreadful feeling and one that I would like to stay away from if at all possible. Having a fear of the unknown is common but, this is a great opportunity to believe that God will take care of us. The second type is called a reverential fear of God which is respecting Him for knowing everything and having authority over all things. The Bible compels us to study and learn about the reality of faith and how to place our trust in God alone. With the holy scriptures containing the phrases, “fear not” and “do not be afraid” more than 300 times, the Lord wants us to know that we can live in confidence when we trust Him with all of our heart. Alexander Maclaren is quoted as saying, “Only he who can say, the Lord is the strength of my life, can declare of whom shall I be afraid?”
I recall as a young boy, my dad remodeled one side of our attic and made a really neat place for my bedroom while the other half of the attic remained dark and scary. You see, I was convinced terrifying creatures lived on the other side of the door, and sometimes in the middle of the night that door would mysteriously come open. When this occurred I became a seven-year-old Olympian who could fly down a staircase in two steps. I remember another unnerving situation from my childhood when our family went on a fishing trip. Dad had a nice bass boat, and we loaded up for a fun day of fishing and a picnic lunch. My little sister was there and my mom was very pregnant. We traveled a long way from the dock and everything seemed fine until we noticed some dark clouds in the distance. Suddenly a bolt of lightning struck with an explosion of thunder so loud that we about jumped out of our seats. We took off, and I had never seen that boat go so fast. It started to rain so hard the drops were stinging our skin. Even as a kid I knew this was serious. Lighting was flashing, and the wind seemed like a typhoon as I covered my head and tried not to think about sinking and drowning. Thankfully, we made it back safe and later laughed about it.
As adults, we may not be afraid of the dark anymore, but anxiety and worries are now felt in more mature forms like managing finances, dealing with health issues, the fear of viruses, relationships, security systems, and concerns with our government and the globalist agenda. I believe many would agree that our country is currently experiencing an overload of dissension and apprehension. No matter our political flavor, there are many questions about the future and this can take a stressful toll on our emotions. Let us consider that much of what we hear is an opinion, and often what we hear and see is a perspective, not necessarily a fact. It’s God’s word when interpreted through the discernment of the Holy Spirit which can be embraced as truth. Our social and legal system has clever policies and ideas, but from a Christian perspective, our highest priority should always be to ask Almighty God for the solutions. My friends, He is the only one that knows the future with the perfect wisdom and plan to save us. “I sought the Lord, and He heard me and delivered me from all my fears” Psalm 34:4.
There is nothing in this life we should be terrified of, it is only to be understood. May we take the time to comprehend more, so that we might fear less. May we take the time to repent, pray and invite Christ to lead us and bless us with His peace, hope, and security. The world cannot offer spiritual contentment and to find spiritual joy, we must decide to humble ourselves with reverential respect before God in the secret place of His presence. This is not a geographic location, but rather a spiritual attitude within our conscience where we can be honest with the one who made us and who loves us more than anything. Turn to Him today and He will fill you with His compassion and encouragement.