During this time of sheltering in place, I am grateful to be learning new things about how to handle my fear. I’ve discovered two places in the Bible that help teach me.
The first is the story of Jesus calming the storm in Matthew, Chapter 8. I realize that He has given me authority over those storms that arise in me, whether they manifest themselves as fear, anger, or whatever kind of turmoil.
What an empowering thought that I don’t need to be taken over by my fear! But how do I go about taking authority over my fear? Well, if I take a hint from the disciples, they had to be aggressive! They woke Jesus up. Not that Jesus is ever asleep, but He waits until we come to Him and ask with energy.
The second story in the Bible is found in Matthew 14. Jesus sent His disciples to get in the boat and go on ahead of Him to the other side. It says, “By this time the boat, battered by the waves, was far from land for the wind was against them.” That description of their circumstances would be enough to get me anxious! But then they saw Jesus coming towards them, walking on water. They thought He was a ghost, and they cried out in fear. Jesus spoke to them, saying, “Take heart, it is I; do not be afraid.”
Peter challenged Jesus to command him to come to Him on the water. (Peter must have believed it was Jesus because someone impersonating Jesus could have asked him to come, and he could have drowned!) Peter was able to walk on water towards Jesus until he noticed the strong wind; then, he became frightened and began to sink.
We need to keep our eyes fixed on Jesus when we bring Him our concerns. I recently read that we too often keep our gaze on the problems while only glancing at Him, rather than vice versa. He wants us to trust in His goodness. I wonder what miracles could be performed if we kept our eyes on Jesus, knowing that He will take care of our fears.