There is a stunning river waterfall where I live in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. The water rushes over the rocks and creates a strong foamy current. A current that has killed multiple people who have fallen in.
A few years ago, a little boy fell into the river around the falls, his sister and a stranger jumped in after him in an attempt to save his life. The little boy survived. His sister and the kind stranger did not.
I allowed this story to feed my biggest fear: losing my child.
For years I would not let my son near Falls Park, my city’s most beautiful landmark. I refused to take him and I forbade all of my family from taking him.
I let my fear consume me. But eventually God opened my eyes. The emotion of fear was not meant to paralyze me, but to help place healthy boundaries in my life.
I found peace in this Psalm:
“But when I am afraid, I will put my trust in you. I praise God for what he has promised. I trust in God, so why should I be afraid? What can mere mortals do to me?” Psalm 56:3-4.
Eventually, I realized that someday my son would go home to be with God. I could do my best to protect him from this happening untimely, but it wasn’t fully in my control. Instead of not allowing him to see the waterfall, I placed safety rules on our visits there: no climbing on the rocks, you must stand at least 2 feet away from the edge, etc.
Are you allowing your fears to paralyze you? Is there something you can take from your fear to place healthy boundaries in your life instead of allowing them to control you?
God says in Isaiah 41:10: “Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.”
God wanted us to live a life of safety and dependence on Him. Together, with prayer and our powerful God, we can overcome the fears that paralyze us.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank you for giving me fear to use as a trigger to put up healthy boundaries in my life. Please help free me from my fears and no longer allow them to paralyze me. Help me surrender my complete trust in You and Your perfect plan. In Jesus’s Name, Amen.
Discussion: How have you found ways to overcome your fears?
My family and I at Falls Park, March 2016
This post is part of my series for April called “Evolving Emotionally”. We will be spending the month of April taking an emotion and seeing what God has to say about it. Join us on Tuesdays and Fridays as we go on the journey of emotions together. To see previous posts in Evolving Emotionally click here. If you enjoyed this post, please subscribe via email!