The sounds of the drummer echoed down the pre-dawn streets, awakening everyone within earshot for the last meal before the fasting of the day began. As my own heart and body trembled with the panic of having been woken up by the loud drumming, I stayed in bed, praying, “Lord, please let them sleep through tonight, please let the kids not hear it.” But within a few seconds, the kids were screeching in terror. The night was dark, and the loud insistent drumming gave us no rest.
Rushing down the hallway with my heart still racing from being woken up, I attempted to soothe the kids with my calming tone, “It’s okay. Mommy’s here. It’s just the drummers.” However, my words, tone, and presence did nothing to ease their cries as the flashy drummer stationed himself what seemed like right outside our building.
With no space for logical thought, and desperation for all the noise to stop, I started singing. As I began to sing to the Lord, my heartbeat began to slow down. As the kids heard me, their cries began to soften. While the noise from the drummer reverberated through our home, the kids and I quietly sang songs of love to the Lord, prayed for our city and our neighborhood, and blessed the drummer in the name of Jesus. While our sleep deprivation impacted our moods for the rest of the day, I was encouraged to know we were not giving way to fear and we were developing a response to scary events.
Somewhere along the way, I picked up the habit of singing to the Lord when my heart has nothing else to offer. When I am terrified, when I am lonely, when I am very discouraged, or when I am overwhelmed, worshiping the Lord has helped quiet my heart, has filled me with courage, and has reminded me of what is true. Furthermore, it has emboldened me to pray that the light of the Lord would shine in the darkness (Isaiah 9:2).
I have been reading of God’s deliverance of King Jehoshaphat and the people of Judah from the Moabites and the Ammonites. As the people of Judah and the King were terrified of what they saw to be certain destruction, God came to their aid. He promised to deliver them and declared that they would not have to fight. King Jehoshaphat set apart singers to go ahead of the soldiers into battle. I have no idea how the people felt as they walked into battle behind the singers appointed by King Jehoshaphat. At what point did they know for certain that God had delivered them?
Many of us have frequent terrifying situations in the life to which we have been called. When you are terrified, how do you stand firm in the Lord?