The Fear Factor

Do you remember a television program called “The Fear Factor?” The contestants faced graduated situations that challenged their fear. The winner was the person who could face his own fears and complete the most challenges.

Fear is a very real thing. Most people have faced it with one kind of fear or another. Fears can be irrational or based on very real situations. I remember being in an abusive relationship with a man. I was threatened, stalked, kidnapped off the street and unable to leave for years because of my fear of him. Oh yes, fear is a very real thing.

Growing up, I don’t remember having a lot of fears. Of course, I faced the usual kid fears. I remember being about five or six and watching an episode of “Sea Hunt” where Lloyd Bridges fought with sea snakes. Before I got in bed that night, I had to check under my covers and then the bed for sea snakes. Fortunately, I did not find any.

Other than that, I don’t remember a lot of fear. I loved to travel and try new situations. I loved to meet people and be in different environments. I had lots of hopes and dreams. After I got out of that abusive situation, I was left with a lot of fear. It was something I had to fight because I never knew if that man was coming for me. Day after day, I had to confront my fears. It was very difficult and the only reason I was able to overcome them was because of the Lord.

By becoming His child, I could rely on Him to take care of me. I had His word to rely on and I would find some verses, memorize them and meditate on them when I felt that fear. Some of my favorites are, “The Lord is my light and salvation; whom shall I fear. The Lord is the strength of my life, of whom shall I be afraid?” Psalm 27: 1-2. I relied on the Lord and His word to get me through my days and especially my nights.

Since the pandemic, many have had to deal with crippling fears. I know people who wouldn’t leave their homes to go shopping. Some wouldn’t even go outside for a walk for weeks. Fear is a very real thing and if you are struggling with it, there is Someone who can give you peace and deliver you from your fear. His name is Jesus and He is just waiting to help you.

When you are in any situation where you are fearful, call out His name. He has conquered sin and death and reigns over hell and the grave. He can and will help you. Don’t live in a prison of fear. Call out to Him, He will be there for you!

Photo by Gerald Altman. Courtesy of Pixabay

Fear: The Ultimate Contagion


Over the past few weeks, I have thought about what to write. The media has inculcated the public with an irrational fear of the COVID19 Virus. I have been in different situations and heard people speak of the fear they are experiencing. I have also spoken to people from the medical community who are not living in fear because they face worse germs every day when they go to their workplace.

This particular Coronavirus is real, of course. It does have about a 1% mortality rate, and those who are elderly or have underlying health conditions are the most vulnerable.  These facts are nothing to sneeze at (pardon the pun). It is highly communicable and it did not start in this country, so there is an element of the unknown about it. Each person does need to practice good hygiene procedures and make individual decisions about where they will travel and how they will limit their own risk of exposure to the disease.

That being said, the next condition to deal with is the underlying fear that is present in our culture today. We need to ask ourselves if we are going to give in to that fear. That answer will be different for each one of us based on our age, our health and ultimately the spiritual center we use to guide our lives.  Those who have no belief in God and are completely dependent on their own resources will have little reassurance. Those of us who do believe in God are in a much better position to defeat this particular enemy.

No matter what situation we are facing, the Lord does not want us to live in fear. He has promised us in His word that He will take care of us. “Fear Not” is woven throughout the Scriptures. For this particular circumstance, we have Psalm 91 to read and take comfort in. He tells us that if we are His and we abide under His shadow that: “He shall cover you with His feathers, and under His wings you shall take refuge; His truth shall be your shield and buckler. YOU SHALL NOT BE AFRAID of the terror by night, nor of the arrow that flies by day, nor of the pestilence that walks in darkness, nor of the destruction that lays waste at noonday.” These are just a few of the verses from this Psalm that we can read and rely on. We can trust God to take care of us no matter what is going on around us.

I am not saying that we will not suffer or that bad things will not happen to us. I am saying that we can trust HIM to take care of us no matter where we find ourselves. For those of us who believe in HIM, let’s take a few deep breaths and remain calm. Let’s trust HIM with our lives because HE ultimately holds them in His hands. And let’s ask ourselves, “Who else would we rather have taking care of us?” He knows our every breath and knows the number of hairs on our heads. He just wants us to trust HIM. 

The truth is that we only have today, it is the only day we have been given. Let’s not live it in fear.  Let’s pray, practice good hygiene and spend time with the Lord in His word. There we will find everything we need to live in peace and to defeat this ultimate contagion. 

Image by john hain. Courtesy of Pixabay