“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God” Phil. 4:6
One winter our area was hit with a huge snowstorm. Over eighteen inches were recorded to have fallen in just two days. It devastated our region. Our house was ok, but the trees were the biggest threat It was during October, so the leaves were still on the trees, which caused the limbs to be so heavy they broke. During the next day, we experienced a lot of power outages from the snow.
Outside our house, the day after the storm hit, I remember hearing a strange popping and crackling sound. When I looked out my kitchen window, I saw a fire. In the middle of the snow, the flames rose above the bank. Right behind our house! I called the fire department, but someone had already reported it.
I called Jason next. When he didn’t pick up, I panicked. Should I leave? I mean, there was a fire RIGHT BEHIND OUR HOUSE!? He finally returned my call, and to my surprise was not nearly as worried as I was.
Did you call the fire department? he asked
Yes, of course! Should we leave? Should I go to my mom’s house? I didn’t ven know if we could get out of our driveway because of the snow….
No, he said. You should be fine. You might want to call the power company. They need to come as well.
But should we LEAVE!? I kept asking.
I mean there was a FIRE right behind my back porch!
He said, “Sarah, the house is surrounded by snow. Water. It won’t spread with all of the water around.
Duh. I felt al little stupid at that moment. We were fine.
The next few hours were surprisingly calm. A fire truck came by to check it out. They said the same thing. And then the power company turned the power off to that line and the flames died down. The snow, surrounding us, protected us. Like a blanket, it put out the fire. Slowly and steadily, with each flare, the snow responded and extinguished the flames. It never even reached our back porch. We were safe, even with just a fire a few feet away.
Anxiety feels like a fire. It is like a slow, burning ember, ready to engulf us at any moment. Sometimes can feel the panic attacks only when they are on me. The “water” I need right then, to put out the fire is prayer. Prayer is like our water. A place where God meets us. In the darknesses of fear, anxiety, and depression, God brings the water to the fire. Just as the snow was slow, steady, and efficient at putting out the fire, God will stay close to us.
I worried the fire would melt all of the snow and then come to the house. But it didn’t run out. God won’t run out. His love, faithfulness, and light will never run out. The waters He provides are enough to satisfy us.
Maybe this time of anxiety is a test, maybe it isn’t. Either way. God allows times of anxiety and darkness – bringing us through the fire – to show us a place of abundance. The place of abundance isn’t when we buckle down and survive. The place of satisfaction is found in God and prayer.
Blessed be God, because he has not rejected my prayer or removed his steadfast love from me! Psalm 66:20
God will never reject our prayer nor will He ever remove His love from us. Stay steadfast in prayer because His love is faithful. Don’t stop praying because He is always listening and working.
Sometimes we have to wait to hear His voice. We wonder why our cries are not being answered. We wonder why waiting is part of our story. but God promises to hear. We can pour out all of our frustrations, fears, and faithless doubts.
Blessed be God. Praise Him. Call out to Him. The darknesses of anxiety will never consume us if we continue to keep praying. Calling out to Christ creates a different fire. A fire that will consume the fear instead of our faith.
How do we set fire to fear? How do we kick fear from our hearts and kindle courage?
Know God Doesn’t Forsake Us
1. He listens.
2. He is everywhere.
3. He is working behind the scenes.
To set a fire, we must strike a match. Setting fire to fear will maybe take time, but today you can “strike the match” by PRAYING.
1. Do I keep things back when I pray? My feelings? My true thoughts?
2. What do I picture about God that is keeping me from praying?
3. Why is it hard to open up to God in prayer?
PRAYER is the power to pursue peace.
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