I was with my youngest daughter last week when I heard the news of the shooting in Texas. Both Keri and I were heartbroken. The situation felt so dark. Since then I've heard from several who are struggling with fear. I understand. With the increase of violence and terror attacks, combined with news reports that are more graphic than ever, it is the perfect storm for fear.
For much of my life, fear was a battle. Even now, with all the traveling Steve and I do, there are plenty of opportunities to feel fearful. So I've learned that I need a plan.
I manage fear in two ways: first, I praise God that He is bigger than my fears. Second, I turn to Scripture. The Psalms provide wonderful word pictures and reminders of God's protection. I have three go-to psalms when fear is threatening my peace:
Psalm 27. I love the reminder David gives us in this psalm that the Lord Himself is our light and salvation. When my little grandkids spend the night, I turn on a night light for them because everyone knows that the darkness is scary. Fear thrives in darkness, but our Lord is the light.
David continues by writing that God is also the stronghold of our lives. The word "stronghold" gives us a picture of a secure tower where we can hide. Though evil may come against us, the security of being hidden in God allows us to stand in courage.
Psalm 46. I memorized this psalm when I journeyed through cancer, and it is still a favorite of mine. David wrote, "God is our refuge and strength, a well-proven help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea" (Ps. 46:1-2). Even when it seems as though the earth is shaking, we can be confident because God is with us.
Psalm 91. This psalm became precious to me when I journeyed through healing for the sexual abuse I experienced as a child. The picture of being nestled under the shadow of the Almighty where no evil could touch me brought me great comfort.
Friend, the next time you feel fearful, either for yourself or your children, spend some time soaking in these psalms. Read them out loud and declare them as truth over your life. Pray them on behalf of your children and spouses. Study them. Memorize them. Read them every day for a season and watch how God will build courage into your life.
Hey, you know what? As you soak in these Psalms and fight fear, I'm cheering for you and praying for you. You can win the battle with fear!
As you're meditating on these Psalms, here's a new song to listen to by, Lauren Daigle called, "Peace Be Still":
I'd love to hear from you. What is your favorite psalm and why?
Becky Harling, an author, certified speaker, leadership coach and trainer with the John Maxwell Team, is an energetic and motivational international speaker inspiring audiences to overcome their greatest life challenges and reach their full God-given potential. Her most recent book is How to Listen So People Will Talk. Her husband, Steve Harling, is the president of Reach Beyond, a nonprofit organization seeking to be the voice and hands of Jesus around the world.
This article originally appeared at beckyharling.com.