courageAn evil, gnarled hand clawed at the throat of the woman in white. She sat up in bed and declared to the darkness boldly, “Spirit of Fear, how dare you trouble a child of God, be gone!”

Only her own pounding heart and racing pulse responded, every fiber of her body still on alert for the danger that wasn’t there. What was wrong with her? Why wouldn’t Fear stop tormenting her and leave? She caught the gnarled hand and dragged the creature before the throne of God. The light was blinding, coming in out of the dark. “Lord, please deliver me of this spirit of fear.”

“I have not given you a spirit of fear, but of power, of love, and of a sound mind.”

“Yes, amen, I claim that promise, deliver me from this spirit of fear, Lord.”

The Son’s face appeared as he touched her shoulder. “I have set you free, and you are free indeed. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak. Look.” He pointed, and her eyes cleared.

The pitiful hand was gnarled from being burned and belonged to a battered, bruised little girl in filthy rags. The little brat wrapped herself around the woman’s legs. “Mommy, I’m scared!”

“Lord, I don’t understand.”

“She is your emotions, especially fears born of the flesh and buried in the heart.”

“Why do you portray such a terrible thing as a child?”

“Children are gifts, and your emotions are gifts.”

“But fear is bad. Its False Evidence Appearing Real.”

“I prefer, ‘The fear of man brings a snare, but whoever trusts in the LORD is safe.’ It is also written, ‘the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.’ You’d be cursed with a seared conscience and be still lost if you had no capacity to fear. You’d also have no fear of the consequences of sin and thus not know to flee from sin. Without this gift, you’d have never seen your slavery to sin and asked to be set free.”

The woman sighed. “Okay, so how do I get free from the chains of fear so I can get on about the Father’s business?”

“You’ve been given three tools. Power, love, and a sound mind. Like a child, this one responds, slowly, to loving, firm, patient, gentle guidance from your sound mind.” The Son knelt by the trembling little one and smiled, inviting her with his nail-pierced hands to cling to him instead.

If you liked “Courage” you may also like “Enough.”

[tweetthis]Courage is fear that’s said its prayers. #free #Encouraging #devotional #flashfiction[/tweetthis]