Updated: Oct 16
Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. -Deuteronomy 31:6
I gripped my youngest daughter’s hand a little tighter, as she tried to pull away. We were walking down “Main Street” at Disneyland going toward the exit of the park. A parade had just finished; so loads of people were coming at us. And we were going against the grain.
As the mama duck, I was trying hard not to lose anyone in my tribe with eyes fixed straight ahead. I was holding onto my daughter's arm, and the rest of the kids were behind her with my husband bringing up the tail. As I fought through the crowds of people, my daughter kept trying to pull her arm from my grip, and I became so afraid of losing her in the sea of people, not understanding why she too didn't realize this.
When I had finally weaved through the huge crowd, I turned around to bend low and talk to my daughter about pulling away from me. I was horrified. I did not have the hand of my daughter. I had charged full steam ahead gripping a hand...and I was a complete stranger to her. It was a woman about my age and her eyes were as wide as saucers. “Oh my word, I am so sorry!” I exclaimed. She replied “Ma’am, you were just so strong! After I tried to pull away a few times, you just held on tighter, and I was sure you were trying to keep me from danger. So I just came with you!”
I was completely mortified, and my family was behind her laughing so hard they were crying. I am still surprised that I didn't get arrested for trying to kidnap a 30 year old woman!
Do you see where I went wrong? My fear was holding me captive, and I was holding onto something that I shouldn’t have been. I was so afraid of losing my daughter in the crowd that I never turned around to see what I was holding onto. Fear does that. It causes us to hold onto things that aren't ours.
When we use fear as our compass we end up lost and confused. Fear about something happening to your kids or husband, getting sick, losing your job, crashing your car, not having food to eat, and much more can completely consume your life. I know I am not alone when I say that when I let fear creep in, it leaves me feeling overwhelmed, helpless and hopeless.
The opposite is true when I let joy, peace and hope rule my heart. I have to focus on what is TRUE rather than fearing what could be.
The Bible commands us to not be afraid. It's not a simple request…it is a command. And, it isn’t just once or twice; it is all through the scriptures. We see God commanding us to “not fear,” “don't be afraid” or “fear not.” One of my favorites is Deuteronomy 31:6,
Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.
I love this because not only does He tell us “Do not be afraid,” but He also commands us to “Be strong and courageous.” Do you consider yourself to be strong and courageous? I mean, I feel like I would live my whole life differently if I walked around with the song in my head that I was strong and courageous.
Oh man, peace. His perfect peace. I need that everyday! He tells us, “I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” He knows that the world is full of junk; full of traps that want to keep us bound up in fear and lacking in courage. He is careful to clarify that His peace is different than the world’s peace. Accept his peace, live in His courage, and do not be ruled by fear...or you might turn around having kidnapped some random woman at Disneyland. :)
Your Fellow Able Mom,
Lord, as we go throughout our day today, I pray that we let go of what we are holding on to. May we let the fear go. May we trade in the worries and the anxiety for that perfect peace.
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