A few months back during the summer, I received a free book from Thomas Nelson Publishing. It was a book by one of my favorite authors, Lisa Samson, and I was amazed at the power in its pages. I read it quickly, something I typically do with all books, and hadn’t thought too much about it until recently. Last week, my husband was at work for two days one with a late shift, the next with an early shift. Since we live quite a distance from his work, it made sense that he should sleep there. During the evening while he was gone, I really enjoyed the alone time. I had dinner with a good friend (leftovers — so I didn’t even have to cook!), and after she left I wrote some more of my thesis, graded some papers, tried to bring myself to read a book that was just so hard to focus on, ate cookies and popcorn, and sang along to some of my favorite music. As it started getting dark, I closed the curtains and holed myself in, trying not to think about the darkness outside. I finally forced myself into bed far later than usual, and laid in fear for quite some time.
While I was laying there awake with my heart pounding and fear filling me, I thought of the book by Lisa Samson, Resurrection in May. I was scared, while alone in my home in Pleasantville, USA with locked doors (and even a garbage can hidden behind the door so I’d know if someone was breaking in) and windows. I said “Jesus” aloud to remind myself of the power of his name, then began to thank him. The fear I have is ridiculous. The likelihood of something “bad” happening to me was tiny.
All over the world, people live in honest fear. They are fearful of militias waiting outside their door in Darfur, of imprisonment if their government disagrees with something they say in China. They fear attacks on their lives in Mogadishu, attacks by people who are terrorizing a city to regain political control.
Our world is a place of fear, but it doesn’t have to be. I know I can say this and it might not mean much because of the situation I am in: the city I live in, in the country I call home. But I believe that the paralyzing fear that I often feel can be and will be overcome by God, my God, the one who faithfully carries me (us/all) through all things.