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Living a life of faith conquers fearcomment (0)

July 1, 2004

By Betty Baggott

By the time you read this I will be in San Francisco with my daughter at the University of California Medical Center.

God is in control, and I can never thank you enough for your letters and notes of encouragement to her and her husband. What a loving group of people you Alabama Baptist readers are. I read every one of them while I was in Minnesota two weeks ago. Thank you for your prayers. Please continue to pray.

I don’t like to fly. Like everyone else during these times, terrorism crosses my mind.

Earthquakes have always made me fearful. Taking taxis by myself in a strange city is not my idea of fun.

The fear of the unknown can leave one unsettled. And the unknown concerning this precious child to be born is there.

Yesterday, I found a card someone had sent some months back. I inserted it in my billfold and cherish the words and, oh, how true they are.

“The light of God surrounds me; the love of God enfolds me; the power of God protects me; the presence of God watches over me; wherever I am, God is.”

Experience of fear is universal. I have heard many times the parents of missionaries share how if it were not for knowing God is everywhere and in control, they could not bear the miles that separate them.

To be in God’s hands and in His care, what a comforting thought.

I have found the more I depend on God the more independent I become. Worry does not help. God wants us to trust in Him one day at a time.

Matthew 6:25–34 tells us not to worry about the cares of life.

“Therefore I tell you ... do not be anxious about your life ... If God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will He not much more clothe you? Therefore, do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Let the day’s own trouble be sufficient for the day.”

Sometimes, the things that we see as impossible to face may be God’s way of using us the most. Other verses on fear that are dear to me:

“For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear, but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry Abba, Father” (Romans 8:15).

“God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble” (Psalm 46:1).

“Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you, not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid” (John 14:27).

And then there are the beautiful words from Isaiah 43:2, “When thou passest through the water, I will be with thee, and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee. When thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned, neither shall the flame kindle upon thee.”

Faith lets us know God’s presence is always with us no matter how big the circumstances of our lives.

I am reminded of the story of a man running to catch a bus while carrying two suitcases. He was completely out of breath by the time he caught the bus and climbed on board. He stood for a moment panting, and the bus driver said, “Sir, you can put those heavy suitcases down now. We’ll carry them from here.”

Such a simple story, but how many times I have carried the weight of life, but God wants to carry it for me. He has, He does, and He will.

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