Friday, November 07, 2014

Terrifying Period of Flashes and Bangs

It has been a tough few days for our little dog! She is normally very peaceful and spends quite a bit of time asleep, but bonfire night seems to just keep on going - terrifying her out of her already limited wits!  Just when she is about to go outside and do what comes naturally there is another almighty bang or screech and flash from the sky and she scoots inside again. Often she bounds into my arms and presses her head into my chest in an attempt to escape "the terror that flies by night". This is her first November with us and we were not looking forward to the 5th, pretty certain that she would find it hard, but now it seems to be every evening this week is the same. Hopefully this weekend will see the end of it at least for another year.

This little character is very affectionate and trusting but she does get very scared when at home. She seems to regard every passing vehicle a threat to our household security and each person walking away from the shop an agent of some terrible enemy!  Mysty is wrong, of course, but we can't get the message through to her yet that there really is nothing to be scared of in even the most appalling banging and screeching from nearby fireworks.

All this has got me thinking again about fear and how paralysing it can be. There is so often no link in reality between the veracity of the threat and the level of our fears. We can be intimidated by things that will never actually hurt us, but the fear itself is enough to cause us real distress. I find it helpful to remember that the New Testament tells us to 'fear not' 366 times - one for every day and one for a leap year also. Of course education and awareness helps to subdue our fears, as we become aware of the actual threats that we face in life.  That's why this month of November being designated as pancreatic disease awareness month is important for me.  But beyond that, and far more important really, we need to learn to really trust in the One who does have the power to disarm enemies and protect his own. "Just like the mountains surround Jerusalem, so the Lord's love surrounds those who trust in him, to deliver them."

So when life disrupts my peace with its threatening and noisy displays I must try to focus on God's promises and presence with me in the storm. Like Mysty I must run into his arms by faith and find the comfort of pressing into his heart and hearing his reassuring words of comfort to settle me and deliver from every fear.