I will take nothing but what the young men have eaten, and the share of the men who went with me. Let Aner, Eshcol, and Mamre take their share.” After these things the word of the Lord came to Abram in a vision: “Fear not, Abram, I am your shield; your reward shall be very great.”” (Genesis 14:24–15:1, ESV)

Fear not, Abram, I am your shield; your reward shall be very great. Fear is a monster that seems to come out of nowhere and take over our minds and hearts. It plays on our emotions and causes us to doubt the very things we know are true.

As insidious as a stalker, fear can penetrate our every waking – and sleeping – moment. Dripping with terror, we are drenched in the fantasy that all is lost and hope no longer exists. Gnawing at our hearts is eats away our confidence like the food relatives eat at a picnic! No one seems to be immune.

Take Abraham. Fresh from his victory over superior forces, Abraham remains generous to the end of the victory. To King Melchizedek of Salem (one day to be called, Jerusalem), he gives away ten percent of all he recovered and asks to keep nothing.

Now, at home, in the quietness of his afterthoughts, Abraham begins to question his decisions, his life, his future, and fear joins the discussion. Don’t you hate that? I mean, why does fear have to come uninvited? And why does it stay so long?

Whenever fear enters, hope exits. Possibility goes with hope as well. And all we are left with is fear and it’s friends, despair, darkness, and disappointment.

God wants to remove our fear and focus us on the future He has planned for us. And so, He commands Abraham to stop fearing! Fear then is an emotion we can control. Why should fear be stopped? Because God shields us from all the evil we imagine and the evil we can’t see. What we should focus on are the promises of God. In them, we find our future, our hope, our “very great” reward.

If you are struggling right now and life isn’t turning out the way you had hoped it would stop fearing. Choose to remember God is our ever-present Protector from all evil and great will be our rewards!

Turn-Around Tuesdays are designed to bring hope and help, insight and encouragement to those of us who are simply overwhelmed by the flood of problems life throws at us. No one is immune to trials and troubles, but God has a way of lifting us from life’s torrents. Each short thought is written by Dr. Matthew Lee Smith, Executive Director of Eagles In Leadership, and comes from his life-journey with the God who never leaves us or forsakes us. He welcomes your comments below.