Fear can paralyze us. It can also panic us. You've no doubt heard of the fight or flight response.
In short, it's a quick burst of hormones that spurs the nervous system into action, flooding us with extra strength, energy, and emotions to respond to a perceived threat.
Males tend to move towards fighting, while females favor fleeing. But that's a generalization. How do you handle fear?
For the choir director; with stringed instruments, on the sheminith [uncertain musical term]; a psalm by David.
O Lord, do not punish me in your anger or discipline me in your rage. Have pity on me, O Lord, because I am weak. Heal me, O Lord, because my bones shake with terror. My soul has been deeply shaken with terror. But you, O Lord, how long. . .? [vss 1-3]
Come back, O Lord. Rescue me. Save me because of your mercy! In death, no one remembers you. In the grave, who praises you? I am worn out from my groaning. My eyes flood my bed every night. I soak my couch with tears. My eyes blur from grief. They fail because of my enemies. [vss 4-7]
Get away from me, all you troublemakers, because the Lord has heard the sound of my crying. The Lord has heard my plea for mercy. The Lord accepts my prayer. All my enemies will be put to shame and deeply shaken with terror. In a moment they will retreat and be put to shame. [vss 8-10]
(Psalm 6:1-10 GW) [Context– Psalm 6]
Key phrase— Rescue me. Save me because of your mercy!
[bctt tweet="Rescue me. Save me because of your mercy!"]
Review the Scriptures above as you answer the following questions
How does this psalm begin? How would you describe the feelings expressed?
What is the tone and plea of the second group of verses? Who do you think David is speaking to?
How would you characterize the last group of verses? Who is being spoken to or about?
Do you see how this prayer resolves from its beginning?
Do you see how David speaks to himself, his enemies, and to God?
Reading of King David's conquest over Goliath, and in many battles as a soldier under King Saul, you wouldn't expect him to react in fear. But his psalms reveal the deep fears and concerns he often had. But his psalms also reveal his "go to" response to fear.
Nelson Mandela, a man acquainted with fear and imprisonment, said, "I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear."
David learned early on in life to call out to God with an open and honest heart. He didn't hide his fear, nor his shame. He knew God would hear him, and he felt free to vent his feelings in prayer. He trusted God with his heart and his life.
God was faithful to King David, even when David struggled and stumbled in his life. His "go to" was God, first and foremost.
Make it personal...
Read through the Scripture text again as you consider and answer these questions
How do you typically start your prayers to God? Are you able to be honest with Him?
Are there times when it seems God is not listening to your prayers?
Do you continue to pray until you're confident God hears you, as you lay your concerns before Him?
Have you learned to pray in faith and confident trust based on how God previously answered your prayers?
Would you like a free study guide for your study of Psalms?