When the reality of coronavirus began to dawn here in the UK, there was an extraordinary reaction. Panic swept through our supermarkets and customers began stripping the shelves, with the most ‘in demand’ item surprisingly being toilet rolls! I was astonished by the daily news bulletins, and went shopping with curiosity. I found that the atmosphere was not so much one of selfishness, but of deep fear; it was a fear tangible even from the car. Over the next few weeks my social media inboxes were bombarded with dire predictions, disturbing videos, scary messages and ominous forecasts. Fear is powerful, more infectious than a virus and it spreads like a forest fire.
Benjamin was a young man who was born with a congenital heart defect. Until he met Yahshua he had lived a very lonely and isolated life, but after his salvation he was radiant with joy. He lived his life fully, trusting in Yahweh, and giving himself in service. Eventually he had to have a very serious heart operation. When I went to visit him afterwards the nurse told me, “He’s doing very well…probably because he was so relaxed before his surgery.” She looked at me in amazement. “We’ve never had anyone like him before.” When I told him, he twinkled at me, “Well, if I died I was going to be with Yahshua” he said, “and if it was a success, I was coming back to His precious Family; so there was nothing to worry about!”
Benjamin’s quiet confidence in Yahweh is something we can all know and enjoy, for we know He is in charge and we can trust Him to do what is best. This confidence is a perfect antidote to the power of fear. King David shared some of his assurance in Psalm 34, “I sought [Yahweh],” he wrote, “and he answered me; he delivered me from all my fears…The angel of [Yahweh] encamps around those who fear him, and he delivers them…Fear [Yahweh], you his holy people, for those who fear him lack nothing” [vvs 4,7,9 italics added]. “You must not let yourselves be distressed,” said Yahshua, “you must hold on to your faith in [Yahweh] and to your faith in me” [John 14:1, J.B. Phillips].