Adalyn (7), our middle child, is like me – sometimes I think we fall asleep before our heads hit the pillow! Emery (10) is more like my wife, Jenn. They lie awake for awhile, brains running and wheels turning. For a while now, Emery has battled fear. It often hits at night, in the dark. Sometimes it’s triggered from a movie scene, a commercial, or something a know-it-all 5th grader told her at school. This week, it was a book. A friend handed her a horror book she had rented from the library, and after just a minute of reading, Emery’s thoughts were running wild.
In the past, when she was struggling with fear, she’d come downstairs after we tucked the kids in bed, sometimes in tears, asking us to help. Over the last few years, we’ve been helping her battle her fears through prayer and worship. Over time, she has learned to pray and sing when she’s afraid. It’s seemed slow, but this week I found out how much it’s working.
This week when she came down for prayer, we talked, we prayed, and she headed upstairs. In the morning, I asked how she slept and she told me, “Good, dad! I have to tell you something cool!” She went on to tell me that she was still scared when she climbed back into bed that night, but instead of coming back downstairs to talk to us, she grabbed her Bible, flipped on a light, and started reading. That’s cool right there, but it gets even better. She told me, “I read Psalm 23, but then I thought, ‘I need to find another verse that will help me not be afraid,’ so I asked God to show me a verse, I closed my eyes, and randomly flipped my Bible to a page. It opened to Isaiah 35, and here’s what I read…”
“Say to those with fearful hearts, ‘Be strong, and do not fear, for your God is coming to destroy your enemies. He is coming to save you.”
Isaiah 35:4 (NLT)
She told me, “Once I read that, I was so excited that God answered my prayer, and I wasn’t scared anymore!”
Come on! How good is that?
Here’s the lesson: learn to fight your fears (and worry, stress, pain, doubt, etc) with God’s Word. Let’s not make prayer and the Bible our last resort; make them your first response.
K E V I N • M I L L E R
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