What Not to Fear

Read Psalm 112

Call me shallow, but I love to watch the show on TLC called “What Not to Wear.”  It’s a program in which two famous fashion experts surprise unsuspecting people who need wardrobe makeovers and teach them what to wear and, well, what not to wear.

The writer of Psalm 112 shares expertise of a completely different kind.  In fact, if he were to produce a show today, it might be called “What Not to Fear.”  This psalmist would catch unsuspecting nervous people in the act of worrying about what might happen.  Or maybe he would find people who can’t say “no” because they’re afraid of disappointing others.  The expert would spend time teaching people with anxieties of all sorts, stressed about might-be’s and I-don’t-knows.  He would help them evaluate their innermost hearts to learn what is worthy of fear and what is not.  He would teach them what it is to be blessed.

Dictionary dot com defines blessed as divinely or supremely favored; fortunate.  The Hebrew word is esher.  It means happiness.  But the word is loaded with so much more than just feeling happy.  It is a completion of the happy.  Because happy as we know it seems like such a moody word, so temporal, whereas blessed implies solid standing in a place called peace.

The Psalmist writes,

Blessed is the man who fears the LORD . . . (v1)

This solid happy, the blessed life, begins with the right kind of fear.  The kind of fear that realizes Almighty God is Lord above all.  That He is not to be messed with.  Worthy of all respect and honor.  The kind of fear that reverences His authority to the point of delighting in His commands, abundantly pleased with the laws of God because there is no other way to live.

Of course, due to the nature of the name of the show, the psalmist would need to spend time looking at what not to fear.

He will have no fear of bad news . . . (v7)

No what-ifs.  No should-haves.  No fear of what might happen.  In fact, no fear at all.

 His heart is secure, he will have no fear . . . (v8)

Because of the hope he or she has.  Unshaken because the fear of God leads to true hope.  Steadfast because of perfectly placed fear.

And the show would end with a complete life makeover.  Because when someone chooses to put all their fear in God alone and trust that He is truly the only One worthy of it, life changes from the inside out.

I don’t know about you, but I’d love to be on that show, too.

brw

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