Dena Netherton is our guest today on Thyme for Writers. She writes Christian suspense designed to keep readers “up all night.” Dena loves the Cascade Mountains and loves to set her characters in small towns nearby. She and her husband live in the beautiful Pacific Northwest. Her article addresses what can paralyze all of us … fear.
Fear is a powerful foe. It can distract you from your day’s work, make you irritable, steal your joy, and rob you of peace-filled slumber.
Sometimes fear in the form of worry, can be so pervasive it can lead to illness.
Like many of you, I’ve been there. I remember feeling so crushed by worry, I had to stop performing in public for awhile. For a professional singer and pianist with a busy teaching and performing schedule, I felt like a complete failure.
“How could I let fear overwhelm me?” I asked myself daily. “Where is my faith? I’ve asked God to help me, but why, then, doesn’t He give me immediate relief? I thought I was strong; now I feel horribly weak. I’m such a coward.”
For a couple of weeks I sat around, doing nothing, berating myself, feeling helpless, waiting for God’s miraculous healing. Then one day it dawned on me as I read scripture that God expects me to act on my faith.
I thought about Moses, (Exodus 3 and 4) hiding from the Egyptian Pharaoh. God told him, go back to Egypt. And Moses went.
Gideon (Judges 6) was threshing wheat while hiding in a wine press, afraid of the dreaded Midianites. God told him, go, be a warrior. And Gideon went.
In the book of Acts, we read about the godly Ananias, praying in the morning. God said to him, go. And Ananias, though he resisted at first, went to visit the arch-enemy of all Christians, Saul.
And of course, there are tons of verses in the Bible where angels, or God, Himself, tells us, “Don’t be afraid.” That admonition comes with a promise: “I will be with you.” (Hebrews. 13: 5)
I have that same promise, as does anyone else who trusts in the Lord.
I am so grateful for all the biblical accounts of fearful people whom God strengthened. When I went through my period of fear, those accounts—and other stories about both real-life and fictional characters— helped me immeasurably.
I returned to performing—literally with fear and trembling—and discovered God’s faithfulness.
As a Christian writer I have a sacred opportunity to encourage readers through my stories about men and women who face fear in their unconquerable circumstances, yet emerge victorious. I hope you read a little bit of yourself in my novels, and find hope that you, too, can conquer your own fear.
For a limited time, Haven’s Flight, the first in my three-part suspenseful series is available for a discounted price. This is the story of Haven, a talented and beautiful pianist who witnesses her mother’s murder and now struggles with PTSD. While attending a wilderness therapy camp, designed to help her conquer her emotional struggles, she becomes the object of a dangerous man’s delusional attention. Alone and injured, Haven must find her way in the wilderness and elude the man who has promised to never stop hunting her. During Haven’s flight, she re-discovers God’s faithfulness and power.
Find out more about Dena on her website and social media: