When my husband was diagnosed with a brain tumor, I was afraid. Fear threatened to overwhelm me. Panic was just under the surface. The thought of losing him brought terrifying questions:
–How could I live without him?
–How could the kids thrive without a father?
–How could I support the family financially while being a single mom of three mourning kids?
These questions demanded consideration, but the emotional strain of the fear left me paralyzed. I think I cried for two days straight before a strange numbness set in.
I needed something, SOMEONE, bigger than myself to help me out of the pit of fear. I knew that worrying about the future would not help me meet the demands of the present. The kids still needed a mommy. Bryan still needed a wife. Life still moved on. As much as I wanted to crawl into bed and not come out until I had awakened from this nightmare, I couldn’t.
Of course, God’s Word always has the right tool when you are desperate for help. The Father brought to mind a verse I had memorized long ago. I looked it up in my favorite translation. An idea hit….so I found one of Bryan’s photos from last summer. After a few minutes at the computer, I sent an image to Costco for printing. As soon as it was ready, I framed it and put it in our living room.
Our bedtime ritual for the next couple weeks was for the kids and I to read these verses together. It was painful-beautiful to watch the girls pray for their daddy. Every night at dinner, we heard, “Dear God, please heal Daddy’s brain.” God kept his promise. He held us with an unexplainable peace during those weeks around Bryan’s surgery. God’s Word provided an antidote for our fear.
Have you ever considered fear as an entity? Have you ever thought that it might be something more than a product of our own emotions? I have wondered that myself. 1 Timothy 1:7 says, “God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” (NKJV) Wherever this paralyzing fear comes from, it does NOT come from God. God wants us to live victoriously in His love. Our Savior conquered the power of death. How easy it is for Him to conquer fear!
So, how do we handle fear?
1. Realize that paralyzing, overwhelming fear is not from God. (1 Timothy 1:7)
2. Realize that Satan could be using fear to attack you. “Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. he prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour.” 1 Peter 5:8 NLT
3. Command the fear to leave in Jesus’ name. Remind fear that Jesus’ blood is stronger.
4. Tell God what you need.
5. Give thanks for what He has already done.