“Do not let your hearts be troubled or afraid.” (John 14:27)

If you’ve ever watched a scary movie, you know how easy it is to let frightening images get stuck in your imagination. A movie, with its spe­cial effects and dramatic music, can make you forget you’re in the safety of your living room. Suddenly, you’re transported to a dangerous and scary place where everything seems malevolent.

The example may sound trite, but spiritually, there are always things in our lives that can loom over us and make us forget the reality of who we are as God’s children. Jesus tells us that being at peace is a choice—we should not let our hearts be troubled. He warned his disciples that he was going away, and then said if they loved him, they “would rejoice” that he was going (John 14:28). Jesus didn’t tell his disciples that they wouldn’t confront frightening situa­tions, but he exhorted them not to allow their circumstances to dictate whether or not they were at peace.

When we focus only on our cir­cumstances, we risk losing sight of the truth. But that doesn’t have to be our fate. We can allow ourselves to be swept away in worry or anxi­ety—or we can hold on for dear life to the surpassing reality of who God is. He made the universe; he loves us and sent Jesus to redeem us; we are his children, held in the palm of his hand; he will never abandon us! These truths supersede the ups and downs of our circumstances.

You may be facing something really scary right now. Don’t let your­self get swept up in the fear! Hold on to the truths of who God is and all he has done, and let these truths build up your faith. Remember how he parted the waters of the Red Sea. Remember how Jesus turned ordi­nary water into outstanding wine. Remember how he rescued you from sin and death and placed his own Holy Spirit in you. Remember, remember, remember! You are a child of God, and nothing, not even the gates of hell, can prevail against you. Your problems may not go away, but you will find peace.

“Jesus, I wonder how I can hold onto your truth when my emotions are pulling me under. I look to you and take your hand. Lead me to my heavenly Father. I don’t want my fears to control me!”

Acts 14:19-28 Psalm 145:10-13,21