“I sought the Lord, and he answered me and delivered me from all my fears.”PS 34:4
This verse jumped out at me the other morning. This is a single line that needs no context to be understood, but it comes in three parts: ‘delivered me from all my fears’ is the last, not the only part.
First: ‘I sought the Lord’: walking along Orchard Street, I was not consciously seeking anyone, but I had made the decision to get active and not sit around inviting feelings of self pity. Stepping outside myself, then; surely this is turning to God?
Second: ‘He answered me.’ On this occasion with a magnificent magnolia.
Third: Even if only for a moment, enjoying the tree, and the old brick wall beneath, I am set free from my fears. Perfect love casts out fear, and perfect love gave every passer-by, as well as the householder, this beautiful tree. Enjoy the spring so that you can bring your fearlessness – it was there for a moment! – to those around who need it.