Five years ago, I helped put together a devotional, specifically for fostering/adopting moms. Never would I have imagined that five years later, I’d be re-reading the book as part of its target audience. This week I’m sharing the thoughts of my friend Tonja. She and her family lived with us during a portion of their fostering process in Nicaragua. Tonja is a talented artist, a devoted mom and wife, and a faithful Christ-follower. In talking about fear, she tackles a serious issue so many parents struggle with, both in the adoption process and while raising kids.
Fear (Day 5)
The kids and I watched a movie called After Earth where the alien enemy could only find the humans if they displayed fear. If the soldier’s heart rate began to increase or if the soldier began to exhibit panic in some way, they were told to “take a knee.” One commander told a young soldier that “danger is real but fear is a choice.” This is so true in the Kingdom of God. If we can “take a knee” and allow our Heavenly Father to strengthen our heart, and to remind ourselves of how good our God is, we will have peace in the midst of a storm. We will be able endure until the promise comes to pass.
Hebrews 4 tells us the Israelites were unable to enter the Promised Land because of unbelief. We have to labor to enter into his rest. Everything around us will scream that the promise of God can’t happen. It’s impossible. But remember, with God, all things are possible!
Step 1: Rejoice in the Lord.
Step 2: Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God.
Step 3: …and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
Step 4: Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy —meditate on these things. The things which you learned and received and heard and saw in me, these do, and the God of peace will be with you.
We endured four months of constant temptation to fear while living in Nicaragua. I am pleased to tell you we made it through. Looking back on our time in country, I am thankful for the lessons God taught me about staying in faith and not giving into fear. I have personally battled fear my whole life and I can honestly say that my experiences during our adoption process have drawn me closer to God and enabled me to face most any situation without fear.
When we arrived back in the U.S., my perspective on life had dramatically changed. Situations that previously felt overwhelming seem small to me now. I feel like David must have when he ran at Goliath. He had first seen God defeat the lion and the bear using David’s own limited strength and ability. So when David later came face to face with the giant, what came out if his mouth was complete confidence in his God. This is how I want to face life: feed my faith and leave fear far behind!
Not only did God prevail in our adoption as we now have two wonderful additions to our family, he brought us home safe, provided all of our needs along the way, and caused us to overcome the midst of many storms.
Thank you Jesus! Thank you!