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Overcoming Fear

Today’s Reflection

ONE OF MY teachers once said that the goal of the spiritual life is getting our fear properly focused. We fear being helpless, losing our retirement nest egg, having to depend on others, or having no one to
depend on at all. Too many of us are up at the crack of dawn and then burning the midnight oil, “eating the bread of anxious toil” (Psalm 127:2). We wear ourselves out trusting ourselves more than we are willing to trust God. But the spiritual life requires us to take the risk of giving our independence and drive to God, taking a chance on the Holy One.

Our holy calling does not ask us to squander our resources but rather to live with an open-handed, open-hearted generosity and abandon, holding tightly to that which comes from God and willingly letting everything else go.

– Martha Highsmith
Disciplines 2012

From “Risky Business” by Martha Highsmith, in The Upper Room Disciplines 2012: A Book of Daily Devotions. Copyright © 2011 by Upper Room Books. All rights reserved. Used by permission. http://bookstore.upperroom.org/ Learn more about or purchase this book.

Today’s Question

What specific spiritual practice calms your fears? Share your thoughts.

Today’s Scripture

Unless the LORD builds the house, those who build it labor in vain. Unless the LORD guards the city, the guard keeps watch in vain.
Psalm 127:1, NRSV

This Week: pray for friends who are estranged. Submit your prayer to The Upper Room Living Prayer Center or share it in the comment section below.

Did You Know?

Each chapter of Forgiving Your Family contains real-life stories, practical strategies, and encouragement to help you move toward forgiveness. Better communication (while critical) isn’t enough, according to Fischer. Forgiveness requires faith and prayer.

Saints, Inc.:

This week we remember Antoinette Brown Blackwell (November 5).

Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

Sponsored by Upper Room Ministries ®. Copyright © 2012, a ministry of GBOD | PO Box 340004 | Nashville, TN 37203-0004 | USA


{ 5 comments… add one }

  • heidi November 7, 2012, 5:40 am

    My practice towards fear is not unlike what Buzz wrote of yesterday regarding pain.

    Fear has only the power we give it. So for me, I first breathe and look for Jesus. Then I name the fear(s) and turn them over, as many times as it takes, to Jesus. When the seas calm and I am still, I rest.

  • robert moeller November 7, 2012, 5:58 am

    Prayer does it for me.

    Thank you the election is over, may we all get along and do what is right with your guidance directing us, Lord. In Jesus name I pray.

    Be with those with whom we are estranged Lord for your love covers a multitude of sins.

  • Andrea November 7, 2012, 6:31 am

    Singing hymns.

  • sheila November 7, 2012, 7:08 am

    watching the sun rise in the morning, especially this time of year where in my little corner of the world, the sky is majestic and magnificient in wide splashes of pink and orange and blue.

  • Buzz November 7, 2012, 12:26 pm

    I agree with Andrea.
    As I move into and through my fears I sing praise to God. Sometimes it’s the simple praise hymn: “Je-sus”. Sometimes it’s: “We Shall Overcome” thinking of me and Jesus. The important thing to me is to do whatever it takes to focus off the negativity of the fear.

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