Wednesday, October 7, 2009

The Only Thing We Have To Fear Is ... Spiders?

Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell. Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from the will of your Father. And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. So don't be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows. Matthew 10:28-31

Back in 1990 when my (now ex) wife and I were dating, I took her to see one of the scariest movies of all times, Arachnophobia. Actually, the movie is classified under the genre comedy/horror. Believe me, there was nothing funny about the movie. Not then. Not now. Jeff Daniels and John Goodman are two of the big stars in the picture, which might lead you to believe that the movie was indeed a comedy, but let me assure you once again, it was not a funny film.

My wife, who was not impressed at all with the movie, found other ways to amuse herself. For example, during one especially terrifying scene when what seemed like millions of half-dollar sized spiders came scurrying up from the bottom of a sink drain, my wife dropped a handful of popcorn on my head. I jumped out of my seat, screaming and slapping at my scalp, certain that spiders were all over my body. (I know that my wife reads these devotionals, so . . . very funny, dear. Don’t think I’ve forgotten).

Arachnophobia. What is it? According to it is the abnormal fear of spiders and is the most common of all phobias. Did you know most spiders are venomous? They are. Usually, and especially with the smaller buggers, the venom they inject is in such small amounts that there is not enough in the dosage to kill a human, or to even make a person sick. And did you know if I wanted, I could crush most spiders with my shoe, or a wadded up roll of newspaper? I could. But what you probably don’t realize is that I don’t care if spiders are venomous or not, or that even if I could crush a spider, I won’t---I would prefer to call (scream at the top of my lungs) for my someone, even my eleven year old daughter, to come and kill the little demons for me.

God says He knows every hair on our head. We have value in God’s eyes. He loves us. God does not want us living in fear from things that can harm the flesh, but have no means of harming the soul. I can’t explain why my fear of spiders is so overpowering, but it is, even knowing the fear is irrational. What God is saying, however, is that I should not be scared of spiders. They can’t touch my soul. Not the Black Widow, or the Brown Recluse, or the Wolf Spider, or the Garden Spider, or the Assassin Spider, or the Daddy Long Legs … but I digress.

Obviously there are other, more legitimate things in life that can harm us physically, and/or emotionally. Some examples might be car accidents, sickness, downsizings, divorce . . . the list can really goes on and on, but God essentially tells us that we need only fear Satan. This is the one real threat worth fearing. How do we put elements of fear into perspective? Have faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Concentrate more time focusing on Him and you will spend less time worrying about Satan.

Leonard Ravenhill, the great revivalist, once said, “ The two prerequisites to successful Christian living are vision and passion, both of which are born in and maintained by prayer.” God tells us we’re His, and that if we are born again, if we are saved, then God promises a home for us in Heaven. There is nothing scary about that promise. In fact, the thought makes me a little homesick.

Thomas Phillips,
Author of the suspense thriller, The Molech Prophecy