When The Lord Is With Us We Have Noth­ing To Fear

McDonald County Press - - CHURCH - By Dr. Don Kuehle United Methodist, Re­tired Jack­son, MO DON KUEHLE IS A RE­TIRED UNITED METHODIST MIN­IS­TER WHO LIVES IN JACK­SON. OPIN­IONS EX­PRESSED ARE THOSE OF THE AU­THOR.

“From Ghoulies and Ghosties, and long-legged Beast­ies,

And from other things that go bump in the night —

Lord God, de­liver us!” (an Old Scot­tish Prayer)

In the car­toon, “Fam­ily Cir­cus,” lit­tle Jeffy is afraid to go to sleep be­cause there are li­ons in his room. His mother can­not see the imag­i­nary li­ons, but Jeffy can see them and is afraid of them.

Fear is a lion with a thun­der­ing roar and huge rak­ing claws that can slash one to pieces. Fear can de­stroy us. If fear is the lion, then faith is the hunter that kills the lion!

We are born with only two fears: (l) the fear of fall­ing and (2) the fear of loud noises. All other fears we learn as we grow older. Some fears are ben­e­fi­cial to us and cause us no per­ma­nent dam­age. Early on, we learn to be afraid of those things that can harm us: “Don’t go out in the street”; “Don’t touch — that’s hot!”; “Don’t speak to strangers.” Other fears are un­nat­u­ral and of­ten imag­i­nary; these haunt­ing fears can cause per­ma­nent dam­age to our lives, to our re­la­tion­ships and to our faith in God.

We are all ac­quainted with these fears: the fear of be­ing hurt, the fear of be­ing re­jected, the fear of fail­ure, the fear of los­ing our job, the fear of los­ing a loved one, the fear of change, the fear of grow­ing old, the fear of dy­ing. We can be­come so pre­oc­cu­pied with these fears that we al­low them to par­a­lyze our thoughts and our ac­tions. Be­cause of these fears, we tend to with­draw into our­selves, cut­ting our­selves off from those who care about us, cut­ting our­selves off from God. The lion has us in his clutches and is tear­ing our lives apart.

Faith is the hunter that de­stroys the lion of fear. Any big game hunter will tell you how to kill a lion — stalk your prey; get to know as much as pos­si­ble about the lion; con­front the lion; when the lion rushes to­ward you, stand your ground and look him in the eye; never run; when you see the bris­tle of the lion’s mane, fire your gun straight and true; and the lion will fall at your feet.

In the same man­ner, we can de­stroy the lion of fear. Find your prey; come to un­der­stand what it is you fear and why you fear it; con­front your fears — are they real or imag­i­nary?; when fear threat­ens to over­whelm you, stand fast in your faith — God will give you the courage and the faith to com­bat your fears! God re­minds us: “Don’t be afraid, be­cause I am with you in ev­ery life-sit­u­a­tion! I am the Lord of life and noth­ing, not even death, can harm you!”

Fear is a lion. Faith is the hunter that de­stroys the lion. Face up to your worst fears. Un­der­stand what it is you fear, and why. Con­front your fears, know­ing that Almighty God is with you. Have faith that God’s power and grace are more than enough to kill ev­ery fear.

When the Lord God is with us, we have noth­ing to fear! Praise be to God!

Fear is a lion. Faith is the hunter that de­stroys the lion. Face up to your worst fears. Un­der­stand what it is you fear, and why. Con­front your fears, know­ing that Almighty God is with you. Have faith that God’s power and grace are more than

enough to kill ev­ery fear.

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