Fear. That relentless nemesis so proficient at striking us where we are most vulnerable: our kids, our future, our health, our safety, our insecurities.
Fear. An enemy that often goes around disguised as something else: anger, ambition, obsession, hunger, inaction.
Fear. A ruthless slave master binding the hands and feet of those he takes captive.
Fear. No match for the God of the Universe who says to us: “Do not fear for I AM with you…” (Isaiah 41:10)
With a new school year starting, fear has been a topic around our house recently. Kids: Will I like my teacher? What if I don’t have any friends in my class? Can I do the work? Me: Will my kids be safe at school? Can I do this again? Are we doing an ok job of parenting?
As the questions started rapid firing, I recognized the work of my persistent enemy: fear. But this time something was different. I was different. “Oh no you don’t,” I said to my familiar foe, “See, I’m no longer a slave to fear – I am a child of God.”
This mantra has been on a continuous loop in my head thanks to the song, “No Longer Slaves” by Bethel Music. I LOVE this song and the profound truth it proclaims.
Seriously, say these words out loud (ok so maybe whisper them if you’re at work): “I’m no longer a slave to fear – I am a child of God.” Those words are game changers for one who trusts in Jesus.
The song was written with the story of the Israelites in mind. They had been in bondage for hundreds of years; held captive by Pharaoh. But then God heard their cry and sent a deliverer to free them. God rescued them from their bondage and made a way for them to enter the Promised Land.
The song is rich with parallels to the Gospel: We are all in bondage to sin and fear of death; we are held captive by the curse of the law we could never keep on our own; God sent Jesus to be our Deliverer and to free us from our bondage to sin and fear; God parted the great chasm between our sin and His righteousness through His Son’s death on the cross; God invites us to come into His Kingdom by way of Jesus.
For those who have trusted Jesus and have walked away from bondage and into His freedom, we don’t have to be afraid of what is to come. Fear has no power over us because we are the blood bought children of God!
Does that mean everything is going to be hearts, rainbows and unicorns? Absolutely not! But it does mean that the One who freed us and the One who holds this entire universe together knows our names and loves us fiercely. We are His and He is ours. He has already defeated satan and death and nothing can separate us from Him.
I can trust that He knows better than I do, that He loves my kids more than I do, that He is working in their lives for their good, and that He will make all things right one day.
So this year I choose trust over fear. Will fear still come calling? Oh yes it will. But my heavenly Daddy is way bigger than my old enemy, and I will let Him fight my fear. And while He fights it, I will keep singing my theme song: “I’m no longer a slave to fear. I am a CHILD OF GOD.”