God’s Powerful Source of Courage When You’re Afraid

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sometimes we’re all lacking courage

When I’m facing something I dread, I don’t like to go to bed. Why is it that a courageous lion goes to sleep and a shivering puppy wakes up at 2:30 am? 

I’m not at my best in the middle of the night. Reason leaves and fear or anger or whatever my reaction du jour is, against whatever I’m facing, takes over.

My problem swells from a small stream to an uncrossable river.

Once I had to do something I dreaded. I don’t know why it bothered me so much because I had done similar things many times. This one scared me, though.

I began to wake up in the middle of the night with anguish attacks. I fought it. I prayed and cried out to God for help.

One night I woke up with a snatch of a song I didn’t know, running over and over in my spirit. I honestly believe the Holy Spirit was singing it inside me.

“You are faithful, God you are faithful.” Night after night when I woke up to the taunting of fear, this phrase from my song  repeated itself over and over. “You are faithful, God you are faithful.”

God took care of the situation and I lived (evidently). But what stuck with me was the fact that God gave me a song to replace my dread. 

I suspect I’m not the only one who ever dealt with night fears. Listen to the this testimony written over 2500 years ago.

“The Lord will command His lovingkindness in the daytime, And in the night His song shall be with me— A prayer to the God of my life.”  (Psalm 42:8)

Courage. So often I lose it. God is the fear fighter in my life, though. He gives me the promises of His Word. He strengthens my heart when I buck up to face my fear. He sings for me: “You are my hiding place; You shall preserve me from trouble; You shall surround me with songs of deliverance. Selah (Ps. 32:7, NKJV)  “Be of good courage, And He shall strengthen your heart, All you who hope in the Lord.” (Psalm 31:24) 

2 Cor. 4:13 And since we have the same spirit of faith, according to what is written, “I believed and therefore I spoke,” we also believe and therefore speak, 14 knowing that He who raised up the Lord Jesus will also raise us up with Jesus, and will present us with you. 15 For all things are for your sakes, that grace, having spread through the many, may cause thanksgiving to abound to the glory of God.

16 Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day.

The Song Is Stuck

Four times in the first chapter of Joshua, God drills this into Joshua. Have courage!  Like a worship leader repeating one phrase 34 times, it seems God seeks an entry point into Joshua’s spirit to diffuse His faith. 

 When Joshua got the message he became a courageous general, striking his enemies in lightning attacks, even commanding the sun to stand still. The burning orb obeyed long enough for Joshua’s men to finish off their enemies. He acted with conviction, no longer paralyzed by fear.

Everyone fears at some time. If we leave it at that we’re stuck. We’re going no farther.

But, If we cry out to God and begin to sing and meditate on His promises, soon courage comes, grabs fear by the collar and tosses him out the door, slamming it with finality behind him.

That song that came to me in the night persisted so long that I finally went onto Internet to see if I could find it. It’s called, “Never Once” by Matt Redman. I had actually heard it some time before but forgot all about it until those night concerts.

“Standing on this mountaintop

Looking just how far we’ve come

Knowing that for every step

You were with us

Kneeling on this battle ground

Seeing just how much You’ve done

Knowing every victory

Was Your power in us

Scars and struggles on the way

But with joy our hearts can say

Yes, our hearts can say

Never once did we ever walk alone

Never once did You leave us on our own

You are faithful, God, You are faithful

Kneeling on this battle ground

Seeing just how much You’ve done

Knowing every victory

Was Your power in us

Scars and struggles on the way

But with joy our hearts can say

Yes, our hearts can say

Never once did we ever walk alone

Never once did You leave us on our own

You are faithful, God, You are faithful

You are faithful, God, You are faithful*

Tonight when you wake up to the enemy’s fear-mongering, I pray that God will give you His song in the night.*
The next two weeks we’re going to talk about how to get courage and send fear packing. Don’t miss it.

Hmmm …

“And I cry, because I do not feel courageous. I feel downright defeated sometimes. Maybe courage is not at all about the absence of fear but about obedience even when we are afraid. Courage is trusting when we don’t know what is next, leaning into the hard and knowing that it will be hard, but more, God will be near.  Maybe bravery is just looking fear in the face and telling it that is does not win because I have known The Lord here. I have known The Lord in the long, dark night.” Missionary Katie Davis

*Copyright Info:  Song Title: Never Once CCLI#: 5997055

Writer(s): Jason Ingram, Matt Redman, Tim Wanstall Artist: Matt Redman

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