I ain't skeered! Are you?

Have you ever seen a big, strong weight lifter scream like a little girl when he sees a spider? Or how about a seasoned defense attorney freak out over a paper cut to her index finger? Maybe you haven't, but you can certainly picture the scenario in your head and have probably seen something similar.

We live in a world where we all want to be seen as tough and fear is a taboo to be avoided. How many movies do you see where the coward is the hero? Yet in spite of our best efforts, if we were to sit in a support group circle together and allow our defenses to come down, we would all admit to being scared of plenty of things.
  • The possibility of our health or the health of our children being compromised
  • Losing a job and being unable to support our families
  • What the future of our country will look like, which means we either have Trump-phobia, Hillary-phobia, Bernie-phobia, Republican-phobia, Democrat-phobia, etc. ad nauseum.
  • Or maybe we are afraid of what we see as international threats, such as ISIS, nuclear capabilities of North Korea, or our perceived leaky borders. 
  • The eventual takeover of the world by the Illuminati and the One World Order (c'mon, everybody is scared of a good conspiracy theory now and then!).
  • Spiders. Because spiders are ALWAYS scary.
Whatever it is that you fear in this world, you often feel justified in your fears because the media has a unique way of stoking the flames of paranoia and hysteria. A few clicks on the keyboard will open up a cornucopia of websites and facts and figures as to why your fears are legitimate and you had better start stocking up on Spam and freeze dried vegetables right away. The fear is real!

But what if you realized that your fears don't actually help you cope with the looming gloom and doom that you are so certain is coming? What if you realized instead that in spite of being helpless to defend yourself against the coming Armageddon of bad healthcare/skewed politics/imminent poverty/etc., you are perfectly safe right where you are? Would you believe that?

Truth is, bad things are going to happen in this world. We've been working for centuries to fight diseases, boost the economy, defeat fascists, and improve the environment, yet time and again we have still seen people suffer and lives lost. It's at these times we are tempted to climb in our bunkers, put on our tin foil hats, and hope for the best. What we need to realize is that not only is help on the way, but that help is already here.

Whether you see it or not or agree with it or not, God is in control. He is what we call "sovereign." Nothing escapes His sight and He is well aware of the condition of our world right now. After all, He has allowed us to make the decisions that have gotten us into the messes in which we so often find ourselves. And if you believe that and you believe that Jesus came to give you life and the relationship with God that you were ultimately created for, then you probably already know that one day the Lord will return and rescue us from this mess and carry us with Him into a perfect eternity. The best is yet to come!

But for now we must live in hope and endure the hard times. God has not left us here to blow around in the winds of uncertainty, but rather He is with us every step of the way. I love the words that He spoke to Israel a few thousand years ago when they found themselves enveloped in a tempest of uncertainty:
Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand... For I, the Lord God, hold your right hand; it is I who say to you, "Fear not, I am the one who helps you."      (Isaiah 41:10, 13)
Twice they were told to "fear not" because there is truly nothing to fear. Did the "wrong" candidate get elected? Fear not, God is in control. Are you afraid of what the doctor's lab work will show? Fear not, God has you in His right hand. Terrified of the world that your children will have to face in the future? Fear not, God's got this.

If we are going to "fear not" then we have to believe that God is bigger than our fears. There will continue to be many things beyond our control that will cause us to wring our hands and worry about the future, causing our fear meters to spike. Yet we can take comfort in knowing that we serve a God who is greater than all our fears. 

1 comment:

Troy Knight said...

Not only can he speak, he's also a great writer. Thanks for your encouraging words. I've often thought, "understanding the sovereignty of God is the single greatest thing a person can do to remove all fear." I know it's cured me. Thanks Brother for articulating it so well.

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