A Prayer About Fear and Trusting God
When I am afraid, I will trust in you. In God, whose word I praise, in God I trust; I will not be afraid. What can mortal man do to me? Psalm 56:3-4
Heavenly Father, as the reach of the internet keeps getting bigger my world keeps getting smaller and a whole lot closer. More so than ever, I’ve realize I’ve got brothers and sisters all around the world who are clinging to you and this Scripture, in ways that deepen my compassion and fuel my prayers. Even as Jesus took our burden and fulfilled the all the demands of the law for us, we now fulfill the law of Christ by bearing one another’s burdens (Gal. 6:2). Prayer is one of the primary ways we shoulder up and love well. Be praised, O trustworthy father, even as we bring our family before you.
When King David prayed this prayer, he’d been seized by Philistines in Gath. As I pray, Father, here are some other difficult fear-producing storylines.
I pray for the Christian community in Pakistan. The recent flood has been inconceivably devastating for the whole nation, and yet even more so for the 2-3 % of the population who are followers of Jesus. They’re already persecuted and now they’re being neglected in this time of crisis. Father, meet them in their real fears. For the glory of Jesus, I pray for enough clean water and food to meet their needs, and enough to share with their Muslin neighbors. May the gospel run in Pakistan through this horrible crisis… through your faithfulness and the servant love of your people.
I also pray for our brothers and sisters in North Korea, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Somalia, Maldives, Bhutan, Yemen, Vietnam, Laos and China—the ten places in the world where Christians are most likely to be singled out for persecution. Father, may your perfect love for us in Jesus drive out their fears and drive deep their trust in you.
What can mortal man do to us? Plenty, but in view of who you are and what really matters, very little. As these Christians live out your redeeming story in nations, which will one day be covered with the knowledge of your glory, give them the same grace and courage you gave Justin Martyr. When facing the mortal men who would take his mortal life, he responded “You may kill us, but you cannot harm us.” What but the gospel can create such a people? Strengthen and gladden our friends who live in harm’s way. Their labors in the Lord are not in vain.
Lastly, gracious Father, though less dramatic, none-the-less important. For friends on our streets and in our churches, who wake up today with hard medical reports… dwindling financial resources… and stories where mortal men have brought harm and are fueling fears, bring the gospel to bear in profound, tangible and obvious ways. And use us, Father, as answers to the very prayers we pray. So very Amen, we pray, in Jesus’ most glorious name.