I’m reading What Women Fear by Angie Smith with the Bloom Book Club over at (in)courage. Today we are taking a look at Chapter 1 “Sitting by the Well” which tackles fear of the “What if…”

I can definitely identify with that fear. I’ve been worrying about the “What if…” since I was a kid. I wish I could say that I’d outgrown worrying about every possible worst-case-scenario that my overactive imagination cooks up. Unfortunately, I’m still scared of what might happen. Some of the things I worry might happen are legitimately possible. Others are ridiculously far-fetched. Of course, no one ever said that our fears have to actually make sense before they plague us!

I was struck by this excerpt, “It’s only in the looking back that we realize God’s hand was in it.” Do I really believe that? How many times have I read Romans 8:28? “Also we know that all things work together for the best unto them that love God, even to them that are called of his purpose.” The notes in the Geneva Bible that accompany that passage remind us that, “…we are not afflicted, either by chance or to our harm, but by God’s providence for our great profit…”

That can be a hard thing to swallow. The idea that everything is from God. And if that was not difficult enough, I’m told that it is all for my good. Should any of the “What ifs” that I fear come to pass then it would be from God, for my good.

Where does this leave me? After all of these years spent in fear, I know that it’s not as simple as “just don’t worry”. But something else that Angie wrote resonated with me on this topic:

“Take it captive before it takes you. As soon as the thought comes, make a conscious decision to set it at the foot of the cross, and make a commitment that you will leave it there. Will you always do it perfectly? Probably not. But you will develop the strength that comes from leaving the weight with Someone who is equipped to carry it.” – Angie Smith, What Women Fear

This isn’t going to be a one-time thing. I’m going to have to lay down this burden of fear over and over again. But lay it down I must! I have not been called to live in fear. I’ve been saved so that I may live by faith.

“For ye have not received the Spirit of bondage, to fear again: but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.” – Romans 8:15