What are You Afraid of?
Written by Cherie Olivier on October 1, 2019
When I was younger, it was the dark. And spiders (and if I’m being honest, spiders still really creep me out).
When I was a teenager, I had a crippling fear of not being seen in exactly the right way. I didn’t really want to be part of the popular crowd, but I also went out of my way to do, say, and wear the right things just so the cool kids wouldn’t think I was a loser and therefore make fun of me behind my back (or worse, to my face).
As an adult, and as a parent, my fears are much different. Am I a good enough mother? Am I doing enough to teach my daughter about Jesus? Am I modeling what a relationship with Christ looks like well enough for her to understand and want the same thing in her own life? Am I keeping her safe? Am I too overprotective?
And then there are the unthinkable fears…fears of what if something were to happen to her? What if something were to happen to me? To my husband? How would we cope? How would I cope?
My daughter is two years old, and she’s pretty much fearless. Climb on top of the dresser and jump off? No problem. Run with reckless abandon straight into the ocean? She’s done it. Ridden a camel? Check. Sat on a horse? Yep. Befriended every single large dog she’s ever met? Duh.
But sometimes, especially in new situations, she can get very shy and timid. I know when she’s nervous or scared because she backs into my legs and reaches up for my hand. And because I’m her mother, and I love her, and I don’t want her to be afraid, I always take her by the hand. I get down on her level and whisper in her ear that everything’s okay. I’m here; she doesn’t have to be scared.
I know that she is safe, but she doesn’t know that. I know that I’m not going to leave her in a strange situation, but she doesn’t know that. And that’s why I grab her hand—to let her know I’m here. She doesn’t have to be afraid. I’m not going anywhere. I love her, and I’m going to take care of her.
God does the same for us when we are afraid, too. Look at this passage in Isaiah:
“‘For I am the Lord, your God, who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, do not fear; I will help you. Do not be afraid, for I myself will help you,’ declares the Lord, your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel.” -Isaiah 41:13-14
We are going to face things in our lives that make us scared. That keep us up at night. That shake us to our core. When that happens, God wants nothing more than for us to reach up to Him, so He can grab us by the hand. If that’s you right now, let your Heavenly Father take your hand. Let him pull you in close and whisper in your ear that you don’t have to be afraid, because He is not going anywhere.