Are you afraid right now? Because i’m gonna just be totally honest. I am scared. There are days when I’m terrified, reading the news fiendishly to see if there’s been an update to the death tolls, the outbreaks in my county, trying to find out if my family and I are safe. Then there are days when I’m mostly ok, although not really ok. At least my body has decided it’s not ok. I actually have crown’s disease and have not had active symptoms in 15 years. Granted I’ve been on a biologic medication that I received via infusion for all those years (long story short i had a reaction over time, but that’s neither here nor there), but I was doing well without anything. And then BOOM! like a tidal wave, my body succumbed to the stress. Did you know most stress scales tally points out of 1000 and and “illness in the family” automatically gives you 500 out of 1000 points? And with our entire world’s family facing this illness, we are all walking around with an insane amount of stress in our nervous systems, our Fight-Flight-Freeze system on hyperdrive. And then you consider other stressors that are common in our current culture. What if you got laid off or furloughed? What if you can’t pay your bills? What if you have a family member who works in healthcare and is on the front lines every day? What if you can’t find toilet paper (and I mean #whytoiletpaper?)? What if you are going a little nuts being quarantined alone (or with your family, both can be stressful!)? These are crazy, uncharted, chaotic, scary times.
Now before you drag me out like the woman caught in adultery and tell me what an awful Christian I am for actually admitting that, yes, I am scared. I am terrified. I even considered writing my will on legal zoom the other night. Yes, all those things are true. Let me also say, I do trust the Lord. I am scared AND I trust the Lord. Those are two seemingly dichotomous truths that exist in my being simultaneously, much like the man in Mark 9. He brought his son to Jesus asking that Jesus cast out the demons in his son and “Jesus said to him, ‘If you can believe, all things are possible to those who believe.’ Immediately the father of the child cried out and said with tears. ‘Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!’’ Belief and Unbelief, Fear and Trust, Hope and Doubt. They can all exist in us AT THE SAME TIME. The journey of Faith isn’t that we are perfect and that perfectly trust and believe. The journey of Faith is that we are imperfect, broken beings who are infinitely loved and pursued but a perfect and perfectly trustworthy Good Father. And you know what, I don’t think our Good Father is at all off put, disappointed or least of all surprised by our Fear. Remember Psalm 139:4? The New International Version says, “Before a word is on my tongue, you Lord, know it completely.” The New Living Translation says, “You know what I am going to say even before I say it, Lord.” He knows what we are facing, feeling, living with. He knows we are scared. And rather than chastising us, he offers open arms we can fall into. He offers a burden that is easy and a yoke that is light (Matthew 11). And He is ready to hear our fear and offer comfort and reassurance that He is still Working.