Though sound asleep and snoring, when I reach for the broom and dust pan, my dog goes into full-on dread mode. She paces the house and continually comes to watch me sweep with fear in her eyes.
Now, she has never been hit or harmed in any way by the broom and dustpan, yet she fears them as if she had. She fixates on the broom and dustpan the whole time they are out. I could be sweeping in one room and she be sleeping in another, yet she comes trotting over to get a good look at the object of her fear and never lets it out of her sight until it is well stored away behind The Door.
Tauntings that engulf us at times. Their realness is nearly irrelevant.
Most of what I fear has never happened. And yet, creeping into my thoughts in the dark of the night, I fixate on them like my dog with a broom.
Irrational fears. What is she really even scared of? What am I really even scared of?
What if the worst did happen? Would my God not be faithful? Would my God not come through and protect my heart and make all things work for the good of those who love Him and are called according to His purpose?
Scary things DO happen to believers, God’s own people.
Bold missionaries do go to jails and are tortured for their faith. Faithful believer’s do walk through painful divorces and betrayals. Pediatric wards do house very sick believing children and terrified parents who love Jesus.
So where is our security? In this shaky world where things CAN turn out “badly” in our estimation. The broom COULD fall and hit us in the head.
The psalmist can relate. You have kept count of my tossings, put my tears in your bottle. Are they not in your book? Then my enemies will turn back in the day that I call. This I know, that God is for me. (Psalm 56:8-9)
Do I know that? He is for me. My God is FOR me.
That is what my dog isn’t getting…I am the one in control of the broom. I love her and would never hurt her with the broom. And even if the broom slid off the wall where I propped it and hit her in the head, I would come to rub it and make her feel better and probably give her a treat.
In a MUCH greater way, my God is for me. He controls all things. He is over every detail and He will not allow one thing to happen to me that is in vain. Unlike my not being able to keep the broom from accidentally slipping, God does control every detail. So if He allows it, then it MUST be something He intends to use for His glory and my good.
So with boldness, like the psalmist, I can proclaim in God I trust, I shall not be afraid. What can man do to me? (v 11)