Fear not, for I am with you

What an assurance! Who says so? It is the one who is the Lord of all creation, the immortal God who promises to be with us; to guard us, to protect us and to lead us to everlasting happiness. Fear is a fundamental human emotion and we all experience it. Fear is caused by a real or perceived threat to life or potential harm to health and it can also be a direct outcome of sin and guilt. There are two types of fear; one that is constructive and makes us cautious when faced with danger and the other is destructive and prevents us from accepting challenges to grow. The former leads to hope and righteousness and the latter to stress, depression and condemnation.

The only fear we should have is the fear of God. Psalm 119 says ‘My flesh trembles in fear of you; I stand in awe of your laws.’ This verse sums up a good understanding of the fear of the Lord.

As Christians we are never to be conquered by fear and cannot allow it to subdue us. Each time Jesus appeared to the disciples after his resurrection he told them not to fear. This is exactly what Jesus is telling each one of us today. Worship him and place your trust in him and the Holy Spirit will give you the courage to face all the challenges of life. When we feel insecure, inferior, lonely or lack confidence in ourselves then fear can overwhelm us but God understands our weakness and has taken all our fears and anxieties away.

The key to overcoming fear is total and complete trust in God. Trusting in God means refusing to give in to fear, it is a conscious decision to rely on him for courage and guidance even in our darkest times. This trust comes from knowing that he is good and reliable. We have great examples of fear giving way to extreme courage in the lives of St. Peter, St. Stephen and a host of other saints and martyrs throughout the Church’s history.

Jesus said, ‘I am with you always, to the very end of the age.’ If God is with us there is nothing we should be afraid of. Psalm 27 says that when you have the Lord, your God on your side you have no one and nothing to fear. So don’t allow fear to define you and limit your personal growth in Jesus. Surrender all your fears and worries to the Almighty and worship him so that you will gain more courage, hope and eternal happiness.

Written by fr soji olikkal