Have you ever been afraid that you were about to get some bad news?
That’s certainly been the case for me – and more than once!
One of those times was near the end of my pregnancy with our youngest daughter. The results from a couple of tests I’d had done made me think something might be wrong with our baby. We weren’t strangers to this particular type of fear; our first baby was stillborn due to a birth defect, and I’d also had a miscarriage prior to this pregnancy.
In the midst of my worries about what I might hear at my next doctor’s appointment, God, as always, proved Himself faithful. I came across this verse in my daily Bible reading.
“He shall not be afraid of evil tidings: his heart is fixed, trusting in the LORD.” ~Psalm 112:7
If we look back at verses 5 and 6 in that chapter, we see that the “he” the Psalmist refers to is the good and righteous man. If we are walking with God, we don’t have to be afraid of hearing bad news. Instead, we can rest in knowing that whatever God allows to come into our lives, He can give us the strength to handle it.
Notice that it doesn’t say we won’t get bad news. None of us are exempt from the trials of life. It just says that we don’t have to fear it.
And why don’t we have to fear getting those “evil tidings?” It seems like it’s part of our human nature to anticipate the worst at times, to allow ourselves to dive headlong into worst-case scenarios. Fear and worry are powerful foes.
The second part of the verse above says we don’t have to fear those evil tidings if our heart is fixed on God and we’re trusting in Him. In other words, if I’m confident in the goodness of God and assured of His love for me, I don’t have to worry about all those “what-if’s”
This reminds me of another verse, Isaiah 26:3.
“Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.“
What causes my heart to be fixed on God? How can I keep my mind stayed on Him? I think these three ideas will help us in that area.
I can’t fix my heart on God and totally trust Him if I don’t know Him. I have to learn about His character and realize that He is trustworthy. That naturally leads to the second thought.
Know His Word.
The Bible is where I learn about God. I claim His promises, I read about His qualities, I see how He faithfully worked in the lives of others.
Both verses above use the word trust. Trust is an act of my will. I must choose to believe in the goodness of God. I have to be willing to put my confidence in Him.
We can fear bad news on so many fronts. For instance, my fears now are quite different from what they used to be. Now they run along these lines. What diseases might old age bring to my husband and myself? Will God protect our daughters from all of the dangers there are as they gain new freedoms like driving? Will our girls continue to make good decisions after they leave our home?
So it’s back to God’s Word I go, back to fixing my heart on Him and keeping my mind stayed on Him. Satan would like for me to live in the grip of worry and fear, but God wants me to live in the freedom that comes when I fully trust Him. I can continue to claim Psalm 112:7 in each situation, and be thankful for the peace I find there.
As far as the situation I referred to at the beginning of this post, and the bad news I was anticipating about our baby – other than my needing a C-section due to her being a large baby (I guess 9 pounds, 1 ounce was a big baby for me!), everything turned out just fine.
Are you facing a particular situation that has an unpredictable outcome? I pray that you will find comfort by focusing on God’s character, meditating on His Word, and trusting Him to do all for His glory and your good.
[Just so you know, I won’t be around on the blog much over the next few days. It’s the final week of fine arts competition for my girls, so I’m off to watch them compete. I hope to share a video or two and some pictures on Instagram, if you follow me there. Have a great week!]