Fear can be paralyzing and rattle us down to our emotional core. How do we get beyond it before it gets the best of us? I believe it's more simple than we realize. What we gaze on matters. What are you gazing on? What has your attention?
Max Lucado from his book Fearless, offers an encouraging nugget about fear, "Whether or not storms come, we cannot choose. But where we stare during a storm, that we can."
When the storm shows up, so will the savior! We see this very example in Matthew 14: 22-34. It's actually one of my all time favorite stories because I relate so well to Peter.
To recap Peter's ordeal with fear, see if you relate. Jesus and the disciples had put in a full day of ministering to people with Jesus healing the sick and feeding a crowd of five thousand with just 5 loaves of bread and two fish. (A Day full of Miracles, are you quick to remember the work of God in your life?)
When it became late in the evening Jesus sent his disciples ahead of him to cross the lake. Late in the night Jesus went out to them, walking on the water toward the boat. When the disciples saw him walking on the water, they were terrified and cried out in fear. (Gripping, dominating fear, can you relate?)
But Jesus immediately said to them, "Take Courage! It is I. Don't be afraid." (Notice the word immediately. He spoke, but did they listen?)
"Lord, if it's you," Peter replied tell me to come to you on the water. "Come," he said. (Have you ever ask him to help you then fail to trust him?)
Peter got out of the boat and began to walk on the water toward Jesus (the impossible became possible), but when he saw the wind, he became afraid and began to sink and cried out to Jesus, "Lord, save me." (He shifted his gaze from Jesus to fear, then fear began to rule, can you relate?)
Immediately (there's that action again) Jesus reached out his hand and caught him, "You of little faith," he said, "why did you doubt." (ever been there?)
Then they climbed into the boat, the wind died down. They worshiped him saying, "Truly you are the Son of God." Then they crossed over to land. (Jesus safely got them through the storm, beyond their fear.)
Max states, "We cannot go where God is not. Look over your shoulder; that's God following you. Look into the storm; that's Christ coming toward you." (Powerful truth!)
Fear tends to blow up and take over our attention. Max Lucado shares another story of how the disciples faced fear and Jesus comes to their aid. Matthew 8:23-27.
No matter what you are faced with today, you are not alone, Jesus the one who makes the impossible possible, is there to get you through the storm, keep your gaze fixed on him, not fear and trust him to get you beyond the storm.
Our special scripture this week, "Don't be afraid, he said. 'Take courage, I am here." Matthew 14:27 NLT
Our featured song this week, "Walk on the Water" by Britt Nicole.
Can you relate to facing the storm of fear? I'd love to hear your thoughts.
Discover more in God's Word.