Facing the Fearful

Sometimes, God calls us to fearful things.  He leads us to walk on stormy seas and to risk all that we have in obedience to Him.  Yet, what I love about God is that He does not tell us the what and then leave us to figure out the how.  What is a person to do when God sends us out to confront our fears?

Then the Lord said to him, “Go back to the land of your fathers and to your family, and I will be with you.” – Genesis 31:3 HCSB

Go back home.  Those must have been scary words for Jacob.  Surely, he still remembered why he left home. His brother, Esau, was intent on killing him for stealing their father’s blessing.  Jacob fled for his life and had no reason to believe anything had changed in Esau’s heart.  What was Jacob’s response? Honest obedience.

In the face of great fear and distress, Jacob does four things. 

  1. He calls upon God. (Genesis 32:9)  Whether we are dealing with fear, disappointment or sadness, there is only one place we should turn.
  2. He remembers his place before God. (Genesis 32:10)  We are deserving of nothing good from God’s hand.
  3. He admits his fear to God. (Genesis 32:11) We must go to God with our feelings.
  4. He remembers the Word of God. (Genesis 32:12)  In our times of fear and distress, we must remember the promises of God.

There is no way around it – sometimes God calls us to face the fearful things in our lives.  But, look back at God’s words to Jacob.  He instructs Jacob to face his fear and He promises to be with him in the same breath.

We do not face our fears alone.

Photo courtesy of Dr. Joseph Valk

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