Living in the grip of fear…

I learned this week that fear can set in where there is weakness. My weakness was learning that I might be facing Chronic Kidney disease. Why? Well, my mother suffered through it for more than 25 years. She spent more than 20 years strapped to a Kidney dialysis machine, three days a week for eight hours at a time. The disease finally took her life 22 years ago. I can tell you…she couldn’t wait for the day she would not have to go dialysis. It was a glorious day!

My dear friend succumbed to the disease after a few short years. She hated it too and complained just like my mother did. She would share her experiences on the machine with me and I could always get a little chuckle out of her when I told her some of the complaints my mom had. My friend was a few years younger than my mother – when she passed away.

Well, shortly after my friend’s passing, her husband went on dialysis. He’s going on two years and it’s heartbreaking to watch him go through it. He’s in the hospital right now. He fell a few weeks ago and it really messed him up. Dialysis is so intrusive. And the older you are, a transplant is not an option, so you just have to deal with it. There is no cure.

Life expectancy on the “machine” used to be five years. Where that number came from, I don’t recall, but I knew at least one lady that didn’t make it to the five year mark. My mother and my friend both witnessed other patients die on the machine. That was my mother’s worst fear – dying on the machine.

After a mass shooting – fear tends to grip us. It holds some of us captive. Back to back tragedies, as it was this weekend – well – there are no words. These tragedies didn’t happen in my community, but they happened in my state. I’ve been to El Paso. I’ve lived in El Paso. El Paso is one of my favorite cities in Texas. And I worked for Walmart for almost nine years. So, it hit close enough to home.

Living in the grip of fear can be paralyzing. I didn’t know if I wanted to cry or scream…”Why Lord?” My husband did the same thing. We wanted to believe that we did something so horrible to offend God and we were facing His judgment. That was our first instinct. Later that evening we confessed to one another – how we felt. We prayed. Each in our own prayer space. God is so awesome. Just when we think that nothing can shake our faith – the Lord sends a reminder. It’s easy to trust God when bad things happen to other people. It’s not as easy when it happens to us. Fear can grab us by the throat if we get to comfortable. It can brings us to our knees, but praise the Lord of the heavens – for that is the best place to be.

Fear not, said the Almighty God, for I am with you. Be not dismayed for I am your God. I was there at that moment when you heard the news. I wanted to remind you that I am always present, even if you cannot sense me. I am with you, always.

Isaiah 41:10
“Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, Yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.”

2 Timothy 1:7-10
“For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.”

Thank you for reading. Be blessed.

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