What Time I Am Afraid
It’s Going to be Okay
Psalm 56:3 says “What time I am afraid, I will trust in thee.” KJV. The NIV words it this way, “When I am afraid, I will trust in you.”
God recognizes that there are times when we will be afraid. In this verse David was confessing that there were times when he was afraid. I don’t think there’s a person living who hasn’t had times when they were afraid, and now probably more than ever. The situation we are in now is something we’ve never experienced before and It’s human nature to be afraid of the unknown. The key to getting through this is what David said, “I will trust in you.”
Jesus promised that he would never leave us or forsake us, (Matt. 28:20, Heb. 13:5) so in troubled times, that’s a promise we can lean on, and trust Him for direction.
When I was about ten years old, I was taking piano lessons, but we didn’t have a piano at home so I could practice. We had an old pump organ, but it’s just not the same. My grandmother had a piano, so after school I would walk to her house and practice. She lived about a mile from where we lived, on Mine Hill. This area was named, “Mine Hill” because there previously had been coal mines in that area. If I turned right at the bottom of the hill, a road led toward the mines, but about half way down the road I could slip through a fence and walk just a short way through the woods to the Issaquah Creek. Our family had a bridge across the creek. If I didn’t take this short cut, I had a longer walk, through the fish hatchery, to the main street of Issaquah, then turn right and follow the Hobart Road to our house.
One day after practicing I headed home. I must have practiced longer than usual, because when I left Grandma’s house it was getting to be dusk. I walked down the hill, turned right and headed down the mine road. Just before I got to where I would slip through the fence I saw “something” standing in the middle of the road. I stopped, trying to see what it was. It looked like two or three head of cattle standing there. When I stopped walking, they stopped, but if I took a step toward them, they took a step toward me. I couldn’t imagine why there would be cows in the middle of the road. No one lived down the road, people who lived on the hill didn’t have cows, and there were no fields in the area where you could expect cows.
I was gripped with fear. It was getting darker, and Mom would be expecting me home. The longer I stood there trying to see what was standing in the middle of the road the darker it got, making it harder to see what they were. I didn’t want to take the longer route home, but I was afraid to try to get around whatever was standing there. Fear finally got the best of me and I turned around, headed back down the road and took the long way home. To this day I have no idea what was standing in the middle of that road. (You might think, “what was a 10 year old doing walking home alone in the dark,” but this was back in the “good ole days” when it was safe for kids to walk to school, walk to town, or in my case walk home from grandma’s.)
We are told not to fear but if we do fear, to trust in the Lord. In my case, it was the right decision to walk away from what I was afraid of. Every situation is different, but we can trust in God to lead us in making right decisions. Sometimes we might need to face our fears head on, but at other times we might need to heed that fear and go another direction. The key is to put our trust in the Lord, especially when we are afraid, and trust him to guide our decisions.
“What time I am afraid, I will trust in thee.”