I had the afternoon out with one of our grandaughters. It was to be just the two of us and I was really looking forward to it. As it was hot and sunny we started with large ice creams. She reached up to the counter on tiptoe, and studiously considered each flavour. Next, the play park and a ride on the 'train.' We were the only 'passengers,' so she sat in front and rang the bell. The owner could see the joy on her face, so gave us extra time.
As a special treat, I thought we would visit the "Dome." This is a sort of living museum, vividly illustrating over 400 years of local history. Each scene is faithfully replicated, complete with sounds and smells, leaving nothing to the imagination. It's so realistic, that you feel part of the scene. What I hadn't reckoned on, was it's suitability for a six-year old.
As we started the trail I noticed it was darker than expected and before long I felt a tug at my jacket. Her large brown eyes looked up to me; "Grandad!" I wondered what was coming. "I'm frightened!" My heart went out to her as I took her hand. We returned to reception, where it was suggested we go the opposite way round.
It was brighter the other end. She was fascinated by the exhibits and asked lots of questions. At a mock-up of a prison cell she held my hand tighter, asking, "Why is that man wearing chains round his legs?" Eventually we came to the 'scarier' scenes and she decided that was enough adventure for the day.
I was so proud of her.
Even at my age there have been times when I have felt fearful and have needed extra assurance that God was 'there' for me. Like the time when my wife was rushed to hospital, seemingly near to death. I held Father's hand as tight as I could, in what ever way came to me. Step by step he led me - us - through the following weeks and months, as His loving healing was worked out. Just another opprtunity for me to grow in the knowledge of His love.
Fear is part of our lives, it's how we handle it that counts. I'm sure God doesn't want us to keep it inside to fester, but longs to hear the words, "Daddy I'm scared!" I can imagine His answer, "Are you son. Let's talk about it."
"Do not be afraid, for I am with you;" Isaiah 43:5 New International Version