Today I'd like to introduce a friend and fellow blogger, Laura Hodges Poole. Laura has accomplished an impressive feat--she's launched two books in two months! The following devotion, "Life's Dark Hallways," is adapted from her latest devotional book, While I'm Waiting .
“The fear of death follows from the fear of life. A man who lives fully is prepared to die at any time.” ~ Mark Twain
Have you ever been really afraid? I mean heart-pounding, palm-sweating, knee-shaking, throat-choking afraid?
My parents live in a ranch-style block house in Florida. Like most homes built in the 1950s, it has a long hallway with bedrooms on one end, the living room and kitchen on the opposite end, and a bathroom in the middle.
At night when I was a child—and especially during stormy weather if the power went out—that hallway loomed dark and sinister. When I came out of the bathroom, I’d peek around the corner to make sure nothing was there to get me. Convinced there was something scary out there, I’d summon the courage to outrun “it.” As I streaked down the long hallway, my little feet barely touched the linoleum. I only felt safe again once I was back in bed with the covers tucked tightly under my chin.
If we’re honest, we all have dark hallways and monsters we try to outrun. If we can just reach a certain level of financial, physical, or emotional security, we tell ourselves, we won’t be afraid anymore. Meanwhile, we sprint down the hallway before “it” gets us, and we survive until our next encounter.
Fear is everywhere. It’s consuming and debilitating. We gain nothing positive from it. When we apply our own strength to situations beyond our control, we fail to leave room for the security God offers us.
Before King David became king, he probably slept with one eye open and looked over his shoulder constantly. After all, King Saul, a madman, had a vested interest in him not becoming king. Ultimately, God’s strength and wisdom provided physical and spiritual protection for Israel’s future king (See 1 Samuel 23). “When I am afraid, I put my trust in you” (Psalm 56:3).
What are you afraid of today? Impending results from a medical test? The risk of stepping into the unknown to walk a path God designed for you? Maybe something less life threatening like boundaries you need to draw in an unhealthy relationship or the need to stand up for yourself? Perhaps you’re afraid of the bitterness and chaos in in your soul.
Reflection: Fear often traps us. Whatever your dark hallway, I encourage you to reach for God’s comforting hand to guide you. Living in his will and leaning on his strength is the best security you’ll ever experience.
Laura Hodges Poole is a freelance writer with dozens of articles, devotions, and short stories in publication. She is a 2014 ACFW Genesis semi-finalist and a 2012 RWA Emily finalist in Christian fiction. Laura is also a non-fiction ghostwriter/collaborator. Her passion is encouraging others in their Christian walk through her blog, A Word of Encouragement. You may contact Laura at email@example.com. Follow her on Twitter @ Laura_Poole and like her Facebook page.
Her Christmas novella, A Christmas Chance, is also available on Amazon.
While I’m Waiting is a compilation of Laura Poole's blog posts. A 31-day devotional, While I’m Waiting will inspire readers to patiently and reverently wait on God to answer prayers according to his perfect timing. Laura shares her own struggles and shortcomings in a way that is encouraging and hopeful, even in the most difficult circumstances. Her devotions show that it is possible to walk through the valley of trials and not despair while praising God and choosing contentment.
As Jim Elliot once said, “God always gives His best to those who leave the choice with Him.”
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