I love the country. I love bonfires. I love my sister-friends. So, I was really looking forward to our connection group gathering: a bonfire in the country. The weather was perfect: the temps chilly and the skies clear.
After lots of good food, conversation and laughter, our hostess shared an activity the Lord had placed on her heart. She had each of us write down our fears. I scribbled down a “new” fear that had recently emerged; a fear that was really not new, just repackaged and thrown back in my face.
As she played the song “Fear is a Liar,” by Zach Williams, we were to literally cast our written fears into the fire. I flung my fear into the center of the bonfire.
I watched as the fire hissed and licked my paper. Scorched, the edges slowly curled and browned. For a few moments, as it writhed from the heat, my fear seemed alive. In a small burst of flame, it was consumed and reduced to embers. Slowly, the embers died out and all that was left were ashes. I looked up and watched the bonfires’ sparks dance against the expansive black sky.
For too many years, like the fire, fear had been hissing loudly and licking at my heels. It started by slowly scorching my confidence. Because it was not extinguished, the fear became alive, consuming and destroying, reducing my hopes, dreams and desires to ashes.
When the song finished, we each read selected “fear not” Scriptures. My verse was Isaiah 43:1:
But now, thus says the Lord, your Creator, O Jacob, And He who formed you, O Israel, “Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name; you are Mine!
It was powerful! I felt blanketed by God’s perfect peace. The One who created me, formed me and redeemed me, called me by my name! The One who called me His own, has – and will – always make beauty from ashes.
I know new fears will emerge and hiss loudly. I must continually be on guard, quick to recognize the lies, and even quicker to extinguish them with God’s Truth.
Fear is not only a liar, he is a defeated, toothless lion. Fear is no match for my God!
Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. 1 Peter 5:8