When Fear Seems Overwhelming

When Fear Seems Overwhelming

“Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9

Our family of five gathered for prayer around Kevin, the oldest sibling. After 21 years, it was our last night together under one roof.

Kevin was leaving the next morning for basic training in the United States Air Force.

This was a big deal for our close-knit clan. Although we knew where he would be for the next eight weeks of training, there was much trepidation and uncertainty about the future. My husband started the prayer. Next came his brother and sister. When it was my turn, the knot in my throat and tears that threatened to spill from my eyes prevented even a whisper. It didn’t help that I could hear the labored breathing and sniffling of the rest of the family. My mind was like a blank canvas.

Nothing. I had nothing.

Soon, my broken heart caught up to my brain as an onslaught of unanswered questions set in like a storm. Would Kevin be okay? Where would they send him after training? Is he ready for this? I cried out to Jesus inside my head. Like an instantaneous heavenly download, peace silenced my stormy thoughts replacing them with Scriptures about courage and trusting in the Lord.

One of the hardest things to do as parents is to release our grown children to the world.

But Who better to understand this than our Heavenly Father? After all, He released His only Son, Jesus, to this world knowing the outcome would bring victory over fear and death. And He knows our (and our children’s) future and outcome, too.

Did you know “Fear not” is the most repeated phrase in the Bible?

God wants us to learn to take our fears to Him. This is where a great exchange takes place. When we submit our fear, God has room to provide us with the courage only He can give. If we have Jesus, we are never alone. As long as we hold on to the promises in His word, we will have all the wisdom, courage, and comfort we need for every one of life’s situations.

Have you been held in fear’s grip over something? God wants to exchange that fear for His courage.

All you must do is ask. 

Scripture tells us that perfect love expels ALL fear (1John 4:18). Scripture also says that NOTHING can ever separate us from God’s love (Romans 8: 38-39). The enemy, however, wants us to remain a prisoner of fear. This is not God’s will for His dearly loved children.

God wants to free you from the grip of fear today. 

Take captive those fearful thoughts using the mighty weapons the Lord has provided (1 Corinthians 10:4-5)

In demonstrating the pattern of repetition of Scripture, I’d say the Joshua 1:9 verse bears repeating.

But let’s try something different. Insert your name in the blank (or a family member’s, or friend’s) before each sentence and read it aloud:

“_________, be strong and courageous. _______, do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with _________wherever you go.”

Now repeat it again. And again. And again. Make it YOURS. We cannot go wrong when using God’s Word as our prayers!

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What are your thoughts? Let me know in the comments below. 

10 thoughts on “When Fear Seems Overwhelming”

  1. Powerful post, Beckie. I became fearful just today over an unknown medical situation with my daughter. So, I needed this. I had heard “fear not” was the most repeated phrase in Scripture. God apparently wanted to make a point. And I’ve always loved inserting names into Scripture to make it more personal. Thanks for the reminder.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. MomentsClub, Indeed, fear can rule our emotions and cause us to act out or internalize in unhealthy ways.
      I’ll check out your blog.
      Thanks for stopping by. I hope you’ll consider following mine 🙂


  2. Absolutely one of my favorite verses from Scripture, Beckie. I cannot tell you how saying this has lifted me out of fear and into the arms of the Lord. And seeing our grown children fly the coop? Always stressful and tearful, but we trust that God will be the wind beneath their wings.


  3. This brings back memories for me. My son also went into the air force (he signed up a week after 9/11) and fear reigned in my heart. But the grace of God brought me through to a place of relinquishment. He is still in the military- it’s been 17 years counting that year of early enlistment as a senior in high school. And God is faithful.


  4. Beckie, I remember several trips and deployments during my husband’s twenty years in the Navy, and yet, I don’t remember as much fear during some of those times as I’ve had with ‘lesser’ ordeals of my four kids! Funny how I felt that my husband could ‘handle’ whatever came his way – though, yes, I was still fearful regardless – but with my children, I have a harder time not fretting and worrying! Thanks for the reminder and I especially like filling in the blank with my name! That’s powerful!


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