This post is the final piece in a series of posts called, “A Six Point Battle Plan Against Fear.” Read the previous post here.
“Commit your future to the LORD! Trust him and he will act on your behalf.”
I have learned that, when going through a crisis, I need to be careful not to dress rehearse tragedy.
We all do it. Our brains go to the worse possible scenario of what could happen, and we park there. The thing about this is that it blinds us to our current blessings and blinds hope. When we learned Fred has cancer, my brain dress rehearsed tragedy to epic Emmy winning proportions.
As I prayed through all of this, I realized that I rob myself of not just hope but the measured blessings of God’s mercy. I began to accept by faith that this journey would be challenging but that God will walk both of us through it. As I did this, some things started to happen. One is that I learned to smile again. Things were funny, and my family showed up in ways that I could never have expected.
Our church, Northside Baptist, Tifton, rallied around their Pastor, and our staff became even closer family. When Fred had surgery, many people drove the three hours to be with our family and me during the 9-hour surgery. There was food, prayer, peace, and so much love. We even got in trouble for being that “noisy group.”
I learned to stay away from both the comparison of other’s situation to mine and also asking God why.
When I compare my journey to others, it breeds resentment and a sense of unfairness. I learned not to ask why but what. What does God want me to see? What wisdom will he teach me through this? I knew our faith was being not just tested but strengthened. There were a thousand miracles along the way.
In this crucible of my faith, in the storm of the fear, how would I choose to live? It is effortless to say we believe God and what scripture says, but when it is time to act on that belief, it is different. How can you learn contentment in a crisis? How is this even possible? Within a few days of Fred’s diagnosis, I read a Scripture that slammed into my brain.
“Commit your future to the LORD! Trust him, and he will act on your behalf” (Psalm 37:5). Two words stood out like they had been lit on fire, commit, and trust.
For me, it was like finding two missing pages of a manuscript that now made perfect sense. When I commit my situation to God, trust grows from this act of faith. The more I studied Psalm 37; I discovered that the Psalmist, David, tells us not to fret three times within the first eight verses. The word fret in the Hebrew means to burn with anger, jealousy, and discontent. Synonyms for this word are worry and agitation. David directs us to a better place of trust when you are in a crisis, but to get there, you must walk through the doors of commitment and trust.
David understood what it was like to walk in extended times of crisis.
For me, any crisis over about five minutes is too long! It takes courage to commit your future to the LORD. When we do this, we are surrendering what we want to happen to the unknown will of God. Unfortunately, God doesn’t give us a long flowchart of our lives with detailed explanations on a particular bullet point crisis in life.
The very word commit in the Hebrew means to roll away our troubles from ourselves to someone who can do something to fix them. When we roll our problems to God, he knows how to improve our situations, or he will give us the grace to live our best lives in the midst of it. There is measured mercy in the peace Christ gives.
The same peace allows us to smile, laugh, and even find joy in the middle of a howling crisis. I would not believe it if I did not live in this measured mercy myself. It is real, huge, and provides us with what we need when we need it.
We will walk in crisis in life as I look back on my own life I see missed opportunities to live in this measured mercy that God so benevolently gives. I made things so much harder on myself because I did not roll away my problems and believe that God would work out my struggles.
While Fred and I walk through the howling winds of this crisis, I can tell you that I have learned some amazing things through this Six Point Battle Plan Against Fear. I think this point closes out the battle plan so well. I will trust God and enjoy every blessing he gives me while I depend on him to work out my struggles.
Every single time.