“Do not fear what may happen tomorrow. The same loving Father who cares for you today will care for you tomorrow and every day. Either He will shield you from suffering, or He will give you unfailing strength to bear it. Be at peace, then and put aside all anxious thoughts and imaginings.”St Francis de Sales
Fear is an emotion we all have. It creates anxieties, desires to retreat and hide, defense shields, or may lead us to finding security in something that is unhealthy.
When uncertainty consumes us, we fear the unknown. When we are lifted from our comfort zones, fear takes flight because we have lost our security of comfort.
In John 21:18, Jesus tells Peter “when you were younger, you used to dress yourself and go where you wanted; but when you grow old, you will stretch out your hands, and someone else will dress you and lead you where you do not want to go.” The passage goes on to explain that Jesus was signifying the death Peter would endure to glorify God. Do you think St Peter may have felt a little anxious or afraid of what Jesus was referring to? Prior to this Jesus had also asked him to shepherd and feed his flock. Peter is being lifted from his comfort zone of being led by Jesus to being the one who is the shepherd of the people of God and later glorifying God in death.
Where does he find security to do the will of God?
Some time ago my girls decided they wanted tree frogs. We went to the pet store, purchased all the necessary equipment to create the habitat for these two little creatures. Little did I know that we had to feed them live crickets, they would not eat the freeze dried ones. All I could envision was crickets escaping in the house and being blessed with the magnificent sound God gave them and not being able to find the little guy and not being able to sleep. After all they do sing a great tune.
My girls were gone for the weekend and it was up to me to feed the crickets to these little green guys. I get the crickets ready, pull the lid off the terrarium and gently place the crickets in through the little tube. Success! So I thought…
I go to pick up the lid from where I had sat it down and discovered a little green guy clinging to the very top of the lid. I literally leapt with a scream as I dropped it. I’m certain he was more afraid than I was. He had just been lifted from what had become home and transported onto an unknown space and then lifted again and dropped.
How often are we moved from a place of comfort to a space where fear or anxiety creeps in and we cling to something that provides security?
Where do you find security? Who do you find security in?
It’s so easy to cling to people, our safe space of isolation, or even addictions.
Sometimes we find it difficult to cling to God, the one thing that provides the greatest security.
“He will shelter you with his pinions, and under his wings you may take refuge; his faithfulness is a protecting shield.”Psalm 91:4
Throughout his ministry and even in his death, Peter draws on the strength and security of God to fulfill God’s will for him. We too can find strength, comfort and security in God through our faith when we are afraid or transported out of our comfort zone.
No matter where life brings us, just like the frog grasping the lid, we can find comfort in holding tight to our faith.
Lord, when I am weak, be my strength. When I am insecure or afraid, be my security. When I want to retreat and hide, may I hide under your wings. Be my protector, my guide, my comforter throughout my journey in this world. Amen