Fear Not!

It’s been a while since I posted to my blog site. It’s not that I haven’t been thinking about it … but sometimes it’s just so easy to post thoughts on Facebook. I promise to do a better job. So let’s talk about promises! I hope this post doesn’t come across as “too preachy.”

One of my favorite quotes from Eleanor Roosevelt is “Do one thing every day that scares you.” Her husband, President Franklin Roosevelt also made a great statement about fear: “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” If there is one thing that I have learned during the past few years is that life is way too short to let fear keep you from being strong and doing hard things.

I have been pondering the scripture from Isaiah 43:1. Part of the verse reads: “… Fear not: for I have redeemed thee, I have called thee by thy name; thou art mine.” The very first episode of the series “The Chosen” includes this scripture. I recently re-watched this episode, which is why the subject has been on my mind.

This is one of my favorite paintings by the artist Yongsung Kim titled “The Hand of God.” He painted it with hopes that the viewer would not see Christ reaching for Peter’s hand. He hoped to have us see the painting as Christ reaching for our hand. In our darkest moments, we can reach for our Heavenly Father or His Son the Christ and they will pull us back on top of the water.

Let’s face it … we will all experience trials. But remember that we have God’s promises. He says to “Fear Not.” You are His daughter (or son). He knows us. It’s encouraging to know that Heavenly Father will be with us during our hard times and our disappointments as well as the good times.

Did you know that in the Bible, God commands us to “Fear Not” over fifty times? So He must mean it! When we take our eyes off the Lord, we begin to fear … we forget that He is our security.

I once heard an analogy of this scripture, to that of a sandwich. The upper and lower pieces of bread are Heavenly Father’s relationship to us … surrounded by His unconditional love. The middle layer represents His promises to us. This is the part that makes the sandwich so delicious. He keeps His promises as long as we keep our end of the deal!

Promises are a big part of our lives … especially in today’s world. While standing at my closet the other morning, looking for something to wear, a thought occurred to me. You ever notice how clothes rarely deliver on promises made about them? Think about all the promises we are made about them in advertisements, or how cute they look hanging in stores. The dress that promises to make you look as good as the model that’s modeling it. The pants that promise to make you look slimmer. The shoes that promise you can walk all day and never feel like you’ve walked a minute. The pajamas that promise to help you sleep like a baby and look awesome while doing it. Then you get it home, put it on… and eeeehhhkkk! Those promises quickly fade, and you’re left with…just clothes. And you soon find yourself peering into a closet full of clothes feeling like you have absolutely nothing to wear. Sound familiar?

And that just one small slice of the world we live in where many promises are rarely kept. We are constantly inundated with notions of dreams we should dream, possessions we should possess and lifestyles we should all live. All of which I have found that, even if realized, turn out to contain empty promises of happiness and fulfillment… unless, of course, Heavenly Father, His Son and the gospel are included, and proper priorities kept. Then we can expect that joy.

It’s interesting that Heavenly Father has never let me down on one single promise He has made. Not one! 2 Peter 3:9 has proven to be true many times in my life, particularly when I am going through trials or hard times. This scripture reads “The Lord is not slack concerning his promise…” So I have learned to transfer my trust from the things of this world to my loving Heavenly Father who made them all. And I tell ya, it has made a tremendous difference in my life.

In a BYU address Henry Eyring said: “You will develop your ability to invest your precious time well by gaining three beliefs.  First, you must gain confidence that God keeps his promises.  Second, you must gain God’s confidence that you will always keep the promises, not that you choose to make, but that he asks you to make.  And third, you must help others gain confidence that God keeps his promises.”

Now having these three beliefs does not mean we will not face difficult troubling times, situations or hard paths. That’s not the promise. Heavenly Father has promised to be with us … to comfort us … to walk with us … to guide us … to teach us … IF we seek and let Him. I picture this as me lifting heavy weights called life. The bar bell is really heavy … but I have help on both ends. At one end of the bar bell is my Heavenly Father and at the other end is His Son … both helping me lift. Then He blesses us. Yes, if we look, there are always blessings mixed in with our trials … and peace and hope! So fear not!

I know this to be truth. I have had many things that were difficult and hard in my life. If it had not been for my firm belief in a loving Heavenly Father , and His love and guidance, I could never have made it through all the trials in my life. I have always known I could do hard things. I have always known that I was not alone … that I have help from above. I thank my mother for teaching me and guiding me from a young age. She was my example … she endured many trials and hard times in her own lifetime.

I felt it an important task for me is to share this knowledge. YOU too are stronger than you think and can rely on Heavenly Fathers promises. YOU can also do hard things. Please follow His words: “Fear Not.”

Just saying …