It’s December! I love December for all the wonder it brings, from the scent of pine and apple cider, to the twinkling lights on houses reminding us of our precious Savior and His birth.
December is the time of year when we dwell on Jesus’ birth. Today I am struck by the number of times people in the story must be told not to be afraid. It makes sense that God’s people must be told not to fear when they see an angel, or are presented with a radical change in their lives, like a virgin birth, for example. We don’t need to fear, because whatever we are presented with in this life, God’s got the purpose, the journey and the end in mind. Think about Joseph, who had planned to marry this lovely woman named Mary, but then finds out that things aren’t going to turn out as expected. In Matthew 1:20, after he has realized his soon-to-be-wife was expecting a child, this happened…
“But as he considered these things, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary as your wife, for that which is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit.”
Is there a fear you are dwelling on today, dear Planter’s Wife?
If so, I would encourage you to step away from your fear. God never intended for us to live in fear — even when we are faced with angels bright as the sun, or life-altering plans.
Today I am going to list all of the reasons why we don’t need to fear. I’m mostly doing this for myself, because it seems fear tends to creep in, especially when I am trying to move forward on something important. When I am afraid, my mind gets filled with questions like…
What if I’m going about this all wrong?
What if I misread God’s leading in my life, and I’m on the wrong track?
What if the timeline I’m following is too fast or too slow?
What if I never make a difference in people’s lives?
What if I lose everything I’ve worked so hard on?
What if, what if, what if!
These thoughts are like strong weeds strangling the life and joy from the work God gave me to do. Do you ever feel this? If so, then join me in focusing on scripture, rather than the cymbal-clanging monkey in your mind, forcing you to dwell in a place you don’t need to be.
Consider the scriptures that include the phrase “do not fear” in the Bible…
But overhearing what they said, Jesus said to the ruler of the synagogue, “Do not fear, only believe.” Mark 5:36 ESV
What can replace fear? Belief.
“I tell you, my friends, do not fear those who kill the body, and after that have nothing more that they can do.” Luke 12:4 ESV
We don’t need to fear men, who can’t disturb our souls. Our eternity is safe in the hands of the Lord. We can take great comfort in this!
So we can confidently say, “The Lord is my helper; I will not fear; what can man do to me?” Hebrews 13:6 ESV
Why don’t we have to fear? Because the Lord is your helper. What a great Helper we have!
Do not fear what you are about to suffer. Behold, the devil is about to throw some of you into prison, that you may be tested, and for ten days you will have tribulation. Be faithful unto death, and I will give you the crown of life. Revelation 2:10 ESV
Even when faced with tribulation, we can rest in Jesus, who promises us the crown of life!
Whatever it is you are fearing today, lay it at Jesus’ feet, because fear has no place in the believer’s mind. God has got you. He knows what you are facing. He will carry you through it with love and with purpose. Praise be to God!
Please forgive us for dwelling on fear in our lives. Please help us to cast our burdens and fears on you, so that we can live in grace and freedom. Please help us to deliver your message to the world during this Christmas season. Give us opportunity to share the gospel. We love you,