Nothing has tested me in the fear department quite like becoming a mom. There are more things to worry about in the world today than my mind can even begin to process. Are my children developing physically and mentally the way they should be? What’s in the food I’m feeding them (because even things we thought were healthy aren’t as healthy as we once thought)? Homeschool, public school, private school?
I have spent more of my life allowing fear to hold me back than I care to admit. I was in my early 20s when God finally broke through to my heart and freed me from the debilitating fear that had kept me from experiencing a full life. A fear that kept me from being who God had created me to be.
I wish I could say that I live every day in that freedom. That when I’m tempted to worry it’s second nature to give it over to God and move on with my day with complete trust in the outcome.
I know that it’s natural to wonder and worry and question. I’m pretty sure that if there is a manual floating around out there about how to do this mom thing perfectly, that is one of the first things it says in big, bold print from the day you find out you’re pregnant: YOU WILL WORRY FROM THIS DAY FORWARD. (P.S. If you find that manual, send it my way immediately!)
If I let it, the fear will overwhelm me to the point where I cannot function on a day to day basis. Fear is one of Satan’s most formidable weapons because it can quite literally keep us from living the abundant life we are created for. (Not to give Satan too much credit but I know from experience that fear is powerful.)
The challenging, life-giving truth is that worship and fear can’t co-exist. We can’t bow at the throne of a perfect God who has a perfect love for us while at the same time doubting that He can handle our fears and our worries. That isn’t true worship. If worship means laying all of what we have before God, that has to include even the fears that are too terrible to speak out loud. The fears that keep us awake in the dark, silent, lonely moments of the night.
And if you’re trying to worship while harboring fears, you cannot fully experience the richness and depth of God’s presence and peace. I am convinced more each day that God desires for us to live so deeply intertwined with him, living in his presence, that fear, worry, despair, even grief have no power over his peace.
There is power in fear. But there is an even greater power in worshiping a God who is powerful enough to handle those fears, erase your doubt, and allow you to live freely.
Do you believe that perfect love truly does cast out fear?