Psalm 34:4-7 – “I sought the LORD, and He heard me, And delivered me from all my fears. 5 They looked to Him and were radiant, And their faces were not ashamed. 6 This poor man cried out, and the LORD heard him, And saved him out of all his troubles. 7 The angel of the LORD encamps all around those who fear Him, And delivers them.” NKJV
In the first portion of this passage, the Psalmist identifies something that too often we refuse to admit – FEAR. If I were to go back to my time in Vietnam and tell you that I was never afraid, I’d be a liar. I knew fear and more than once and am not ashamed to admit it. In fact, I didn’t want to be too close to people who claimed they never experienced fear because I found them to be careless too frequently and that got people hurt or killed.
There were times in my childhood and my adult life when I was gripped with fear. Sometimes the threat was real and at other times it was a phantom danger that I was afraid of. Learning to know the difference is important but the effect on your body and your mind is the same and often it will paralyze you so that you are not able to function as you should. In Vietnam when fear tried to grip our hearts our training kicked in and we reacted out of instinct and as the adrenaline kicked into high gear we were oblivious to fear or pain and focused on the task at hand.
In life, we have fears, some more than others. Fear can come as a result of “guilt,” and in those cases, it is important to recognize that and run to the Lord for His mercy. I like what the Psalmist said, “I sought the LORD, and HE HEARD ME and DELIVERED ME from ALL my fears.” (Emphasis mine) Then in verse seven, he gives us an incredible hope upon which to hang all our hopes – “The angel of the LORD encamps all around those who fear Him, and delivers them.” What a promise! We have God’s angels setting up a barricade around us who fear the Lord and they come to our defense as the enemy comes in. No wonder Isaiah said, “When the enemy comes in like a flood, the Spirit of God shall lift up a standard against him. (Isaiah 59:19b)
Having fear is not the problem not dealing with it is. Being afraid is not something you have to hang your head in shame over, refusing to admit it is. I confess there is a certain amount of “fear” or “trepidation” in my heart concerning this nation at this time but at the same time, I am 100% confident in the LORD. “I know in whom I have believed and am persuaded that He is able to keep that which I have committed to Him against that day.” 2 Timothy 1:12 We are living in “perilous times” but our LORD is King of Kings and Lord of Lords and one day “every knee will bow and every tongue will confess” that Jesus is Lord!
What I want to conclude with is this; do not allow fear to dominate your life because you are more than a conqueror through Christ. Fear like thoughts and temptations will come but you do not have to give it lodging place and can “resist the devil” and watch him flee. Why – because of Christ in us!
May God be with you as you go through your day!