52 Workday Prayers: Psalm 34 - When You Feel Afraid of Failure

Prayer / Produced by partner of TOW

I sought the LORD, and he answered me,
and delivered me from all my fears. . . .
O taste and see that the LORD is good;
happy are those who take refuge in him.

Psalm 34:3, 8


O Lord, these days I feel so anxious about work. It seems like I can barely keep up with the expectations for me. And when I do, then they change. I worry that I won’t measure up. I’m afraid of falling behind, even of failing.

What will people think of me if I don’t succeed? What will I think of me? So much of my identity is wrapped up in my work, Lord. Yes, I know I should be more rooted and grounded in you and your love for me. But work is such a huge part of my life and, I admit, my sense of who I am. If I fail at work, does that mean I’m a failure as a human being?

At night, I’m awakened by these familiar fears. I can’t seem to shake them. I cry out to you for deliverance, but then I grab onto my fears even tighter. Help me!

How grateful I am for this psalm, Lord. I can relate to “this poor soul” who cried out to you because of “every trouble” (v. 5). That’s what I’m doing now, crying out to you because of all of my troubles.

Even in my anxiety, Lord, I have hope in you. You are the one who answers my prayers. You deliver me from all of my fears. Even if things at work don’t turn out as I wish, you will be with me. You will save me from despair, from self-condemnation, from shame. You will help me, once again, to taste and see that you are good.

So, dear Lord, today I take refuge in you. You are my stronghold, my safe place, my guardian, my rock. You will always be there for me. I trust that you will indeed deliver me from all my fears. Yes, Lord. You will. Amen.

Ponder Throughout the Day

God knows all of your fears and he will deliver you.

For Further Reflection

Read all of Psalm 34, paying attention to what the Spirit of God is stirring up in your heart, especially in relationship to your work. Talk with God about what you are thinking and feeling.

God is love, and those who abide in love abide in God, and God abides in them. Love has been perfected among us in this: that we may have boldness on the day of judgment, because as he is, so are we in this world. There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear; for fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not reached perfection in love. We love because he first loved us. - 1 John 4:6-19

This prayer is part of a collection: 52 Workday Prayers: Learn from the Psalms How to Pray through Your Work. To purchase this devotional and small group guide, visit the De Pree Center store.