“Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.”  Psalm 23:4

Fear is a powerful thing.  It robs.  It steals.  It promises only one thing — defeat, which leads to death.

But why do I fear in the first place?  Is it because of the presence of evil?  Is it because of the unknown?  Is it because of having few answers to the many questions?  Is it because of helplessness or tiredness?  Is it because of a lack of faith or surplus of self?  Why do I fear?

I’m reminded, in this season especially, of Mary when the angel appeared to her for the first time to tell her about her virgin pregnancy.  The angels first words?  “Fear not . . . ”  It’s quite obvious the angel knew his presence would invoke a reason to fear.  But he brought with him and spoke through the power of the Kingdom of Heaven and Mary was fearless.

I’m confident there was fear in the Israelites as they faced the Philistines.  Fear because of the insurmountable odds against them . . . after all, Goliath was huge!  But, with the power of the Kingdom of Heaven, little David showed the Israelites what it meant to stand in the valley of the shadow of death and fear no evil!

The Babylonians lived in fear of their king, Nebuchadnezzar.  To exercise power over his people, he ordered all to bow and worship him — or death.  But, with the power of the Kingdom of Heaven, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego stood fearlessly to worship the only true God.

These are only a few of the many examples in God’s Word.  Casting away fear unleashes the power of the Kingdom of Heaven!  Who can stand against that?  Mary would say . . . “No reason to fear, God is with us!”  Goliath would say . . . “Not me [grunt]”.  King Neb would say . . . “I am no king, stand and worship the true King and God of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego!”

So, how do I face the fear without an angel as my coach, without a few stones, without the threat of a fiery furnace?

This is how . . . I face fear head on, confident of the power of the entire Kingdom of Heaven at my disposal — Christ Himself as my coach, the Sword of the Spirit as my stones and the heat from the testing of my faith as I trust in Him who is the Author and Finisher of everything in me!

Lord Jesus, teach me to be like Mary!  Teach me to walk down into the valley to face fear.  Teach me to stand firm, in confidence that today all things are working together for Your good!  Be my words, be my thoughts, be in me!

“There is no fear in love.  But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment.  The one who fears is not made perfect in love.”  I John 4:18

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