Monday, January 29, 2007

Forms of fear

The psalmist proclaims, " When I am afraid, I will trust in you" (Psalm 56:3). This is what I was meditating on this morning. Of course, my mind wandered to that song "You are my Hiding Place" from Psalm 32 and the chorus, "Whenever I am afraid, I will trust in you."

Fears take on many forms. Children are afraid of the dark, of the absence of their parents. We as adults fear losing those we love through distance or divorce. My greatest fear right now is that my words and actions might discredit my Lord. The past couple of weeks at work have been difficult for all of us. Last week I raised my voice in response to my supervisor. At lunch I wept over my lack of self control. I had read and meditated in the morning on that portion of scipture, "May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight..." (Psalm 19:14). I was so far off in left field from that. As that day progressed, perhaps my words were better (at least less), but the meditations of my heart were quite another matter.

I had to face the ugliness of my sinfulness and repent. Would I have treated the Lord like that? I truly find hope and encouragement in Luther's theology of "simul justus et peccatore," of the Christian being simultaneously saint and sinner. It prevents me from beating myself up too much. What are the fears you are dealing with? "Whenever I am afraid, I will trust in you" (Psalm 56:3).

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