July 6, Handling Fear

Today’s reading: Psalms 26-30

“The Lord is my light and my salvation—
whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life—of whom shall I be afraid?” - Psalm 27:1.

The Bible in general and the book of Psalms in particular speak about fear a great deal, since it is so common and prevalent among all human emotions. Fear can neither be ignored, nor can it be allowed to rule by saying, “I’m only human.” Recently, I received an email update from an author named Seth Godin that spoke about fear. Here is what he wrote:

“If you can say this out loud, when you’ve been holding back, avoiding your confrontation with the truth, you will free yourself to do something important. Saying it takes away the power of the fear. On the other hand, if you say it 8 times or 11 times or every time, you’re using the label to reinforce your fear, creating an easy escape hatch to avoid doing something important. Saying it amplifies the fear. The brave thing is to find the unspeakable fear and speak it. And to stop rehearsing the easy fears that have become habits.”

Are you hiding or disguising your fear, not acknowledging its existence? Are you reinforcing your fear by speaking it often, justifying its existence? In today’s verse, the psalmist acknowledged his potential for fear, but by asking himself questions he prevented his fears from taking root and growing.