Runners know the inherent dangers of the sport.
While we all face the possibility of injury, individual runners also grapple with location-based hazards. I’m a Florida-based runner, which means every so often, I run past signs like this one:
As a friend of mine likes to point out, that sign is obviously meant for out-of-towners, because no self-respecting Floridian would willingly swim in that lake. We know while alligators do leave the water to travel, they’re not well-equipped to capture prey on land. Therefore, the simplest way to avoid being bitten is to stay high and dry.
For me, the logistics are simple. If I don’t run directly along the bank, I don’t run the risk of a bite.
There are daredevils who flirt with danger, of course. They caper past signs like these, frolic in gator-infested waters, and live to post the videos online. I’m not one of those people. I believe although there are fears we should endeavor to overcome, some fears keep us safe.
This is also true in the Christian life. While I wrestle fears and doubts the Lord will help me overcome, I also live in healthy fear of my own heart—of the part still drawn to my own destruction.While I wrestle fears and doubts the Lord will help me overcome, I also live in healthy fear of my own heart—of the part still drawn to my own destruction. - Ruth Buchanan Click To Tweet
I’m not alone in this. In addressing how quickly and willingly hearts succumb, Paul writes:
Therefore let anyone who thinks that he stands take heed lest he fall. No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it (1 Corinthians 10:12-13, ESV).
Florida is full of alligators, but my fear doesn’t keep me from running—in fact, my healthy fear of gators keeps me safe. It keeps me running from what could potentially destroy me.
In much the same way, I take my own frailty seriously. I do not caper past warning signs in the delusional belief the dangers don’t apply to me.
Instead, I flee to Christ.
When we’re scared, we have a refuge.When we’re scared, we have a refuge in Christ. - Ruth Buchanan Click To Tweet
What healthy fears drive you to Christ? How can we encourage others to seek the comfort of our High Priest, Jesus? Share in the comments below.
Together, let’s run to Christ.
About the Author
Ruth Buchanan is a Christian freelance writer who holds degrees in ministry and theology. She writes fiction, non-fiction, plays, and sacred scripts. She’s an eager reader, an enthusiastic traveler, and the world’s most reluctant runner. Ruth loves Jesus, family, church, friends, and coffee. She lives and works in South Florida. You can learn more about her and her books by visiting RuthBuchananAuthor.com.
More Stories of Reaching Beyond Fear into Faith:
Redefining Fear by Jennifer Cotney
Flying Through the Air with Faith by Amy Merritt
Faith, Fear, and Fire Hydrants by Chip Mattis
The Dreaded F Word by Norma Poore
His Hope in the Darkness by Alynda Long