When a opossum is frightened, it stops all movement and pretends to be dead in the hope its predator will move on.
“Do not be afraid” or a form of the phrase appears more than 100 times in the Bible. With such repetition God instills an important part of the Christian walk. When an enemy scoffs or a challenge floors me, it would be so much easier to roll over and play dead and wait for the storm to pass.
When I was diagnosed with cancer, I could have crawled into bed, assumed a fetal position and let cancer overtake me. But God gave me His power to face the diagnosis with bold steps. Within a few days of my diagnosis I drove to the medical library and walked to the reference desk. When I asked the librarian for materials about my specific cancer, she brought me enough periodicals and books to read for a year. Instead of being overwhelmed, I asked God to sort through the mound and make relevant information jump off the pages for me. He armed me with knowledge to understand my oncologist’s recommendations for treatment and make decisions to fight the disease.
Nearly a year later my oncologist said, “You’re in remission.” And then he said something that surprised me. “I knew you’d be one of the survivors the first time you came to my office. You came armed with a positive attitude and a basic knowledge of your treatment choices.”
I responded with my Truth. “My real armor is the hope I have in Christ.”
Without the Great Physician’s strength I could have easily caved into the fear.
“So be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid and do not panic before them. For the LORD your God will personally go ahead of you. He will neither fail you nor abandon you.” Deuteronomy 31:6 (NIV)