Can Faith and Fear Coexist?

Years ago, I sat with an older mentor friend and his wife. He was going through a very scary health issue. He and his wife are people of deep faith and courage and, at the same time, they were scared and the possibility of a very different future was staring them in the face.

That day, as I sat with them in their family room, they shared with me how God had spoken to them about faith and fear cohabiting with one another. They had faith that God would be with them and take care of them, but they were also afraid at the same time. Isn’t this one of the grittiest paradoxes of human experience?

King David is one of my biblical mentors. In Psalm 18 we see this same paradox embodied in this hero’s life. Saul, the king of Israel, has made David his enemy and has tried to kill him on a couple occasions. David says,

“The cords of death entangled me; the torrents of destruction overwhelmed me. The cords of the grave coiled around me; the snares of death confronted me. In my distress I called to the LORD; I cried to my God for help. From his temple he heard my voice; my cry came before him, into his ears” (Psalm 18:4-6).

Clearly David was fearful: “In my distress I called …”

Yet look at verses just before his cry for help:

“I love you, O LORD, my strength. The LORD is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge. He is my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.”

Do you have a situation in your life where there is a struggle of faith and fear? What is it? When is the last time you released it to your heavenly Father and remembered who He is and what He’s done in the past?

Read more about David: The Making of a Man of God: Studies in the Life of David by Alan Redpath.

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