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Thursday, March 26, 2020

Your Dying Spouse 742 - It's OK To Be Scared {Five Minute Friday}

The Bible says don't be afraid 365 times...once for each day of the year (I guess you're allowed to be afraid for one day each leap year, and 2020 is a leap year...but I digress).
My point is that may Christians take this to be injunction and command, rather than encouragement...and when they're afraid, they question themselves, and question their faith.
I'm scared, so I don't really trust Jesus...I'm not good enough...I'm weak...why can't I bring myself to obey..?
And we read passages like Matthew 14:22-31, in which Jesus seems to chide Peter for his fear, and lack of faith:

22 And straightway Jesus constrained his disciples to get into a ship, and to go before him unto the other side, while he sent the multitudes away.
23 And when he had sent the multitudes away, he went up into a mountain apart to pray: and when the evening was come, he was there alone.
24 But the ship was now in the midst of the sea, tossed with waves: for the wind was contrary.
25 And in the fourth watch of the night Jesus went unto them, walking on the sea.
26 And when the disciples saw him walking on the sea, they were troubled, saying, It is a spirit; and they cried out for fear.
27 But straightway Jesus spake unto them, saying, Be of good cheer; it is I; be not afraid.
28 And Peter answered him and said, Lord, if it be thou, bid me come unto thee on the water.
29 And he said, Come. And when Peter was come down out of the ship, he walked on the water, to go to Jesus.
30 But when he saw the wind boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink, he cried, saying, Lord, save me.
31 And immediately Jesus stretched forth his hand, and caught him, and said unto him, O thou of little faith, wherefore didst thou doubt?

But there's more to it than this, more than the 'faith casts out fear' mantra we so often hear.

Jesus would soon feel very frightened, and very alone.

He'd sweat blood in the Garden of Gethsemane, and entreat His friends to stay awake with Him...and He was so disappointed...personally disappointed...when they failed Him.

But what, really, did He have to be afraid of? He knew He'd rise from the dead, right? Job jobbed.

Tell yourself that next time you're at the dentist for a root canal.

And perhaps more than the physical pain, He feared the loneliness that would come from assuming all the world's sin...a complete separation from the Father, in payment of that debt.

Father, why hast Thou forsaken me?

But He knew the relationship would be restored!

OK, tell yourself you'll eventually be released, after robbing a bank and being sentenced to ten years'; hard time with your cellmate a 300lb biker named Squeezer.

Jesus knows pain, and He knows lonely...and He knows you, in these hard, hard days.

This life may seem a prison, but you've got Jesus as your cellmate.

You think you should be fearless
(for ain’t that what the Bible said?),
but in these days that seem so cheerless,
it’s OK, my friend, to be afraid.
When Peter stepped out on the wave
and then cried out in sinking dread,
Jesus, yes, called out his faith,
but did not cut the poor man dead,
for He knew that in due time
He (yes!) would meet blood-sweat terror,
but that it would not be a crime,
nor even an unforced error
to ask God, must this be the plan,
the Passion of the Son of Man?

Music from Sister Hazel, with a delightful live performance of All For You.

Thanks to Carol Ashby, Blessed Are The Pure Of Heart is back on Kindle, and will be available in paperback soon.

Friends are everything. I couldn't have done it.

Marley, the canine waif from Afghanistan, whom WE helped save, has a Facebook page! Please drop by to see how happy he is today.

Below are my recent releases on Kindle -please excuse their presence in the body of the blog. I haven't the energy to get them up as 'buttons' in the sidebar. You can click on the covers to go to the Amazon links.


  1. Yes, it's okay to be scared and definitely acknowledge it, because Jesus did know fear and He understands our fear. I'm so thankful He does understand and also gives me peace when things are hard. Blessings and love to you and Barb!

    1. Gayl, you're so right...knowing that He understand does bring peace.

      Love and blessings back!

  2. The one thing that has been on my heart this week is GOD IS IN CONTROL. Thankful for this promise.

    1. Encouraging Joy, He sure is. And all will be well. Thanks so much for being here!

  3. Encouraging as always. Thank you

  4. Listening to Sister Hazel now...a good one! I recall it from high school days for me. My spotify shut down for some odd reason...perhaps for room for listening to this! I pray you continue to make poems, take stock in the Father, and rejoice in the days we have to write! FMF friend, Jenn

    1. Jenn, I'm so glad you enjoyed the song. It's one of my favourites.

      Thank you so much for your prayers...they mean more than I can say.

  5. Job jobbed? hahaha! And how do we KNOW it isn't pronounced job, as in a job? Something else tothink about when you can't sleep.
    YES Andrew everyone fears! And so did Jesus. He went through every single thing we did. Identification! Hey pray for me sir...A tongue ulceration that refuses to heal....yes, fear! Love you! Remember Noah was quarantined for forty days!

    1. Love your words here, Mary, and LOVE YOU!

      You are such a blessing in my life.

  6. Replies
    1. Susan, from you...that is such high praise. I am SO HONOURED.

      By God, milady, I love you.

  7. Love your perspective. Yes, it's okay to be afraid but let's not dwell there. For me, I must bring myself back from the edge by remembering we are not in this, or any trial, alone. He brings us new mercies every morning, so I'm choosing to Praise and not panic. Thank you and bless you both, Andrew.

    1. Suzette, exactly that...on't dwell in fear. We're not aloe.

      Blessings back!

  8. It is encouraging to remember that Jesus knows what it is like to struggle and that he experienced all the same emotions we do.

    1. Lesley, for me. knowing that Jesus understands...it' a lifesaver...and thank you so much for being here!

  9. Replies
    1. Diane, thank you so much! You just made my day! :)

  10. (((((Andrew)))))

    Thank you.

    Annie in Texas

  11. thank you... good way of putting things into proper perspective. :) visiting from FMF 31 today.

    1. Annette, thank you so much...and I LOVED your post and poem. SO good!

  12. This is such a wonderfully classic "Andrew" line: "This life may seem a prison, but you've got Jesus as your cellmate." Yes!

    1. Lisa, I'm so glad you liked it! Thank you!

  13. Had to snicker at "Squeezer!" Always got to insert some levity even in the midst of a very serious post and subject, don't ya, Andrew! We truly need to bear in mind the feelings that Jesus experienced when facing such a daunting task, such a horrific situation. Yet, I'm sure He reminded Himself of the truth of His situation and we should do the same. We are never alone or powerless with the Lord! Thanks for this shot of encouragement, and dash of humor! Praying for you to stay virus free, my friend!

    1. Beth, you're so right...we absolutely have to keep ourselves reminded, especially now, of our Ultimate Reality.

      We're truly never alone.

      And Squeezer waves a big Hallo!

  14. Thank you, Andrew. Be blessed. Be encouraged. Be everything you are meant to be in these trying times. One thing we all know is we are beloved by God, and that's saying something. Did you ever read Henri Nouwen's book "Life of the Beloved"? I suppose you have. Maybe I've mentioned it before, since I repeat myself (yikes). It's one of my favorites. Blessings to you.

    1. My dear Norma, "Life of the Beloved" is one of my favourites, too!

      Thank you so much for being here. YOU help keep me encouraged through the worst of times; your friendship, and your love.

  15. Andrew, thank you for the reminder that our faith is growing. We aren't condemned by God in those times when we falter. He gives us grace (and sometimes chastening), but He never turns us away. He helps us to learn and be strengthened for future times when we'll face fear.

    Thanks for the reminder that fear is an honest emotion,

    1. Jeanne, you said this so well, but you left out one thing...

      ...sometimes, watching us, He rolls His eyes.

      Thank you so uch for being here!

    2. Ha! I may have chortled a bit at that one. ;)

    3. So glad to bring you a laugh, Jeanne!