This week was the first at my new job as property manager in Lake Forest Park, and I could not begin to tell you how stressful it was. There’s so much to learn and so many new reports to generate and numbers to crunch, all the while still answering the phone and/or talking to folks walking through the door seeking a place to live or submitting work orders. I’m the only staff for the office.
Beginning on Monday, I received a complaint from one of the residents who threatened legal action. Thankfully I was able to talk to him reasonably about the issue and find a solution that tied up all loose ends and he was happy. I was indeed overwhelmed.
On top of all that, it was a sick week at our house. All of the kids got the junk to varying degrees and finally Caity ended up not feeling well and had a moment of collapse that caused me to realize that I needed to be home on Friday to ensure everyone was taken care of. When I spoke to my new supervisor Valerie about it, she agreed I needed to be at home (thank you Valerie).
The point I was getting to is that I’ve been facing a lot of fear. Fear of new responsibility. Fear for the health of my family. Fear of being stuck in this new place. Fear of failure.
However, Caity and I get up every morning and read a chapter from the bible as well as whatever Oswald Chambers has to say in “My Utmost For His Highest”. We are continually amazed at how God uses these tools to speak directly into our hearts, overcoming our circumstances.
Currently we are reading in Isaiah, and this last Wednesday, November 13th, we read Isaiah 8. It was then we found this nugget:
Do not call conspiracy
everything this people calls a conspiracy;
do not fear what they fear,
and do not dread it.
The LORD Almighty is the one you are to regard as holy,
he is the one you are to fear,
he is the one you are to dread.
When Isaiah originally spoke these words, he was speaking to the people of Judah living under constant threat of invasion from their neighbors in the north. They lived in fear, but he told them that this fear is wrong. It is only healthy to fear the one living God; everything else is under his control anyway and we should not fear the details.
Then Caity and I also read the passage from “Utmost” dated for the same day:
All of our fears are sinful, and we create our own fears by refusing to nourish ourselves in our faith. How can anyone who is identified with Jesus Christ suffer from doubt or fear! Our lives should be an absolute hymn of praise resulting from perfect, irrepressible, triumphant belief.
~Oswald Chambers, My Utmost For His Highest, November 13
We all struggle with fear. Fear of war, economic collapse, terrorist attacks, climate change, or any of the myriad personal struggles that cause us to fear can rob us of our trust in God. God alone is the one we are to fear, and let everything else fall under his divine purview.
Overcoming fear with faith is the only way to unlock the shackles that hold us back. Faithfulness not fearfulness will strengthen any person willing to follow God through the dark valley. Only then are we set free to accomplish faithfulness in our daily duties to those whom we love and serve.
How do your fears cripple you? Are you willing to surrender them to God and fear him alone? Are you ready to be free?
SOLI DEO GLORIA!