Having four kids of my own, I instantly know the cries of a child who has just had a nightmare. My response is instinctive—I don’t even have to think about it. I instantly jump out of bed and run to comfort my child.
Each one of my kids has had that night when they swear there was a monster under the bed. That feeling of terror is one that I myself have not forgotten from my own childhood. I wonder if anyone can ever really forget what it’s like to be absolutely scared of something that may or may not exist.
Even as an adult, my monsters haven’t disappeared, they’ve just taken on new forms. Many of us, of all ages, still have monsters under our beds; they exist in the form of insecurities that bring terrifying fear into our lives. One fear may be that our spouse is being unfaithful and that our family may never recover; or perhaps we fear that our parents don’t really love us and that we are nothing more than disappointment to them—something they convey every time they remind us that we were an accident.
Monsters exist in our fear of failure and inadequacy. The fear that we might one day lose a child or that they might be hurt in some unspeakable way is a monster that lives under the bed of every parent on this planet. Yes, we all have monsters; and what is terrifying is that some of them may one day prove to be real. These monsters exist, and most of us don’t know which ones are under our own beds. Yes monsters can be real.
With all these uncertainties in the world, it is no wonder that we struggle with trusting God. We may fear that He doesn’t really love us, or that He doesn’t really care what happens to us. We may fear that God knows what we have done and won’t ever forgive us.
For some of us, these fears run so deep that we are convinced that God is either angry or He just doesn’t exist. However, that is not true, and there is no possibility it ever could be. God is real, He loves you, and He desires to bring light into your life.
Knowing that His disciples had fears of their own, Jesus acknowledged those fears when He said, “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world” (John 16:33 NIV). There are some very real monsters in this world today. There are some things that we are justified in fearing, but please know that God loves you and that He desires to give you hope and life.
Knowing Him can bring peace even in a world of chaos. Trusting Him can strengthen us when the monsters appear in our lives. And through faith in Him we can know that He will never forsake us and that He will keep every promise He has made. He has overcome the world because He is God and that is His will.
When any of my children fear that a monster is under their bed, I do everything I can to comfort them and to teach and remind them of the basic truth that God is bigger than the boogeyman.
Please come join us as we fix our eyes on Jesus. We meet Sundays at 9 a.m. for Sunday school and 10 a.m. for worship. Everyone is welcome!