Fear of the Unknown

There I was, standing in line at an airport in Paris, just about to board my flight back to the States. It had been a long day already. Our ride that took us from our hotel in Athens, Greece to the airport to catch our first flight of the day picked us up at 4AM. I was exhausted. I was looking forward to getting to my seat, eating the in-flight meal, and then sleeping until the plane landed in Atlanta. 

It was finally my time to go through security and board the plane. All I had to do was scan my passport, and then I would be on my way. I scanned my passport and a big red “X” popped up on the screen. Immediately, one of the airport workers rushed over to me and told me to follow them. I asked them what was going on, but they wouldn’t give me an answer. My mind began to race. Was my passport denied? Was the flight overbooked? What happens if I can’t get on the plane? I was tired, hungry, and, now, scared. Nobody would explain to me what was going on. I was forced to stand there, alone with my thoughts, for what felt like an eternity.

Ultimately, it turns out that I was randomly selected for a more intensive security check. It makes sense given that it was an international flight. I was relieved when I finally took my seat and realized that I had gotten worried about nothing. However, in the moment, I truly felt anxious and afraid.

Looking back, it was the unknown of the situation that got to me. If, when I asked, they had explained to me what was going on, then I would have been put at ease. All of my negative emotions would have dissipated, and I would have willingly gone with the flow.

There’s something about the unknown that we don’t like. I believe that this is what creates anxiety and fear in our lives. It is when we a situation is out of our control that we begin to worry. We don’t like it when we don’t know what’s going to happen. The truth is that no matter how unknown the circumstances are to us, it is not an unknown to God.

All throughout the Bible, you can read verses that say, “Do not fear,” “Do not worry,” and “Do not be anxious.” I don’t think this is an accident. God knows who we are and how we operate. He knows that we are worriers. We can’t help it because that is part of our humanness. However, when we worry, it is because we are struggling to trust God.

Tim Keller, a pastor and author, has a quote that I really love. He said, “If we knew what God knows, then we would pray to be in our exact situation.” If we believe that God is good and that he truly cares for and about us, then we need to believe that he will work all things for our good.

Isaiah 41:10 reads, “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” God’s got your back. He loves you and is going to take care of you. Worry, anxiety, and fear happens when we doubt that. I don’t believe that we will ever fully overcome that because it is part of the human condition. That doesn’t mean that we can’t overcome those feelings, and the only way to do that is to go to God. 

He is in control. He is all-powerful and all-knowing. There is nothing that happens in our lives that he cannot handle. We need to realize that even when we are not in control of our circumstances, our loving father is. The only way to overcome the fear of the unknown is to trust in our God who has made himself known and knows each of us by name. The next time that you feel worry, fear, and anxiety start to overcome you, remember that you are loved by God. There is nothing that can overtake that love.

Thank you for taking the time to read this today. I hope that you found some encouragement in what I wrote. If you did, please like and share this post. It would mean the world to me! Remember: I love you, but, more importantly, God loves you!

Published by smith1626

I am the Director of Youth Ministries at St. John United Methodist Church in Scott Depot, WV. Mostly, I am a sinner saved by amazing grace.

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