Fear Factor Four Years Later

This morning I was looking to see what posts of mine had been read in the last week.  Fear Factor from a little over four years ago was one of them.  In fact, according to my stats, someone googled ” tj fear factor.”  Curious I went back and read the post.  The post needed some serious editing, but the content was perfect for this season we are in now.  FYI if you go and read the old post, I edited it for grammar mistakes.

In the past month, violence directed toward foreigners has escalated.  Usually these types of events are far away or don’t affect us.  This time they affected us.  We knew people who were in danger.   We knew people who were killed.  The atmosphere was perfect for fear to thrive.  For some, fear threatened to take over.  Mostly they were overwhelmed by the acts of terror and how close it came to those dear.  In others, a strength arose.  They were calm and sure in the face of uncertain times.   What made the difference?   Much of it had to do with how close people were to the incidents and the people involved.  Some of it had to do with how they were doing spiritually and emotionally.  This place can eat you up and spit you out really quick.   Different people react differently.   Some people needed to leave.  For others, it made them dig in their heels to stay.   
How is our family doing?  So far, we seem to be weathering the storm well.  It helps that we came back from the states with our reserves high ready to work and serve.  For me, my time with God since I have been here has been a source of strength and comfort.  The words have come alive in my heart.  God knew what I needed.  It was almost like He said, “Dear one, what do you think of this?”  Running many mornings to worship music has fortified me as I remember who God is and consciously take a stand.  Okay that might sound silly about taking a stand.  I can’t run on the roads here so the temptation is to not exercise at all.  So in a strange sort of way, running in my backyard is a way for me to say “take that” to the evil that makes my life more restricted.  This is not to say that I haven’t had my moments and my tears.   Daily we are giving the unknowns to the God who knows all things.   Not from fear but as a precaution, the kids and I will be going to the states for the summer.  Making decisions for the summer has been a battle for me in terms of not stressing about where to go and who we need to see.   Some days I have nervous energy trying to get my to do list complete.  Other days I am at peace with the days ahead.   It is a daily choice of where to put my trust. 
So now if people ask me if I am afraid to live here, I would still say, “No, I am not afraid.”  Do I take precautions?  Yes, I do.  Am I ever anxious?  Yes.  A lot?  No.  But then again, I am trying daily to lean on a God who is all powerful and completely in control.

Dear God, Thank you that you are the calm in the midst of any storm.  Be with those who are hurting and overwhelmed by all that has happened.  May this draw them closer to you.  May they see you and draw comfort from your presence.  Be with our family that we will chose trust over fear.  Help us to run to you first of all when troubles come our way.  Keep us safe in your strong arms.  Amen

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