What are you Afraid of?

Posted: May 6, 2013 in Uncategorized


It is a relatively simple question. Really; what causes you to be afraid. Someone has suggested that the acronym F.E.A.R. actually describes fear. False Evidence Appearing Real.

The other day I was reading in Matthew 14. Jesus has just fed over 5000 people with a few loaves of bread and fish, a small boy’s lunch. And He has gone up into the mountains to pray, and He has dispatched His disciples to go across the large sea before them. About half way across they encounter a storm and are desperately struggling with the board to survive.

Jesus comes to them walking across the water. A conversation with Simon Peter leads Peter to step out of the boat and begin to walk on the invitation from Jesus across the water. But then we read verse 30, “But seeing the wind, he became frightened . . .” It doesn’t say that he saw the waves. It doesn’t say that he saw the boat capsizing, or tossed and turned. It says, “Seeing the wind.”

In reality, a person cannot see the wind. They can see the effects of the wind, but wind itself is not visible. Jesus essentially said that to a man named Nicodemus; “The wind blows where it wishes and you hear the sound of it, but do not know where it comes from and where it is going;” (John 3:8). You cannot see wind.

The reason that I belabor that point is the reality that Peter was afraid of something that he could not see. Jesus is standing right in front of his eyes. He had just witnessed the incredible miracle of the feeding of so many with so little. He has just watched Jesus walking on the water, and has even done so himself for a few steps. But now he is afraid of something he cannot see.

How often are you afraid of something that you cannot see? Is that unseen something bigger and stronger than your God? Is it able to overcome Jesus? Someone has said that there are 366 “fear nots” in the Bible(that is one a day, with an extra for good measure). I haven’t counted them, but I know there are many. Obviously God does not want us to live in fear.

As I thought about this, I found myself pondering young David facing Goliath. Do you remember that story? All of the Israelite army, including Saul, is afraid of one giant named Goliath. When they all looked into the valley before them, it was all they could see; Goliath, and they were afraid. I am convinced that David could not see Goliath because Jesus blocked his view. He knew that His God was bigger and more powerful than any giant he might encounter. Instead of being afraid today of something that looms large in your mind’s eye, but not so much in reality, exercise an awareness of faith that concludes my God is greater; my God is stronger; my God is able to take care of me.

  1. Dan Griffin says:

    Amen. Good word

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