Sometimes

I really, really hate to admit this after all my talk of how God has healed me in the past. It feels like I’m pulling a fast one on you after I’ve announced to everyone how God has been delivering me from my fears. But here it is.

Sometimes at night when I’m tired, I get overwhelmed for a moment by fears.

I fear that this time I really have said or done the absolute stupid and wrong thing and a particular friend is gone for good. He or she has un-friended me and taped a picture of me to a dartboard for target practice.

I fear that I will always be single because no girl will ever find me attractive or desirable and I will always be left with this unfulfilled longing inside of me.

I fear that I’m really not good at anything and really won’t ever find a career that really makes me come alive to who God created me to be.

I think the difference this time is that I can name these thoughts as lies. It may not completely take away the panic and the pain, but it helps when I see these thoughts for what they are and their true origin from the father of lies.

I know now that most of the time a good night’s sleep will help these fears go away. Sometimes, it’s a glass of warm milk. Sometimes, it’s just practicing deep breathing. Sometimes, it’s saying, “Abba Father” over and over. Sometimes, it’s resting in the eternal Arms of my Abba Father and listening as He sings over me to calm my anxiety.

It’s okay for me to have setbacks and regressions, because they keep me grateful and thankful for the times when I am living out of faith and not fear. And those times are more and more prevalent.

There will always be something to fear. There will always be those moments when you give in to that fear. The question is: Can you name that fear for what it is and claim the promises of Jesus over it? Sometimes, you have to claim them out loud, but even when you don’t have a voice to speak them out, they are still powerful and true and for you.

Perfect love casts out all fear. In my case, perfect Love is casting out all fears, one at a time. I hope you find this to be true for you. Because the freedom is so much more than worth it.

When the Lights Go Out

lucynarnia

I was en route from Memphis recently, listening to a book on CD, as all well-seasoned travellers do. It was The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, book 5 of The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis. It was read by Derek Jacobi, by the way, in case you were dying to know.

In the book, the Dawn Treader sails into an island of darkness. It’s a place where fear rules and all nightmares come to life. Lucy is at the top of the ship, watching as the crew tries vainly to escape. In her desperation, she says, “Aslan, if you ever loved us, help us now.” The answer to her prayer is an albatross who, as he flies by her, whispers, “Courage, dear heart,” in Aslan’s voice. He then leads them out into the sunlight.

I bet you’ve been in some dark places in your life. You’ve felt trapped in the valley of the shadow of death, where no light or hope can get through. You’ve been searching for a way out, but all you find is more darkness, more despair, more hopelessness.

You feel your circumstances will never get better. You fear that nothing will ever change. You come to believe that your worst-case scenario is due to come true any day now. Your faith is at a low ebb and your fears are cresting and crashing waves that swamp you.

There’s a voice, if you are still enough to hear it, that whispers the same words what it whispered to Lucy. “Courage, dear heart.” It says, “Hold on. Trust in Me in the darkness even when you can’t find Me there. I am with you, with My everlasting arms underneath you. I will never ever let go.”

Don’t believe that you feel or what you think, but what you know. Believe the same God who has proved Himself over and over and Whose word is true. Know that He is with you and for you in your darkness. Darkness may prevail right now, but joy is coming with the morning.