17 When I saw him, I fell at his feet as though dead. But he laid his right hand on me, saying, “Fear not, I am the first and the last, 18 and the living one. I died, and behold I am alive forevermore, and I have the keys of Death and Hades.
For Lent this year, I gave up fear. In the past I’ve given up physical things like sweets or soda, but when I was praying about what to give up, this thought came to me: “no more living in fear.” As I told my husband what I decided, I could feel relief, like a gentle breeze blowing through soft white curtains. I had named it. Fear. I wasn’t going to walk in it anymore.
I’ve struggled with fearing what other people think about me. Will they accept me as I am? Will they like what I say and write? I fear making mistakes in raising our kids. I’m scared I will look back – ten or twenty years down the road – with regret. Did I savor the fleeting moments enough? I’m afraid of the ramifications of big life decisions. What if my husband and I choose this path or that one?
I’m being reminded that fear has no place in my life. Fear is a liar. It tells me everything contrary to the finished work of Jesus on the cross. If I am bending to fear, I am forgetting Jesus has already defeated it.
We live in the tension of Satan having been defeated, but not yet destroyed. That day will come and with it, the end to all fear. Hallelujah! Still today we can live in confidence in life and death. Because Jesus holds the keys, we can walk boldly in the victory He has already won over death and sin and sorrow and suffering. And fear.
Let the reality of Jesus’ authority over life and death sink deep today as you listen to Fear is a Liar by Zach Williams. Ask yourself, Is there anything I’m habitually living in fear of? Maybe jot down a list of fears and then rip it up as a symbol of Jesus’ conquering of those fears. Today, may you walk in freedom and in the newness of the life He purchased for you.
By Ellen Rosenberger