I've caught a bit of the news today; enough to know that this is not a good day. Friday the 13th has nothing to do with it.
This is the world we live in today, a close-by world, an "Instagram-grenade" world,
a music concert-hostage world, a dinner-then dead world, a world bent on terror and human trafficking, heroin in our schools and bullying, shark attacks and earthquakes, water shortages and Presidential elections.
Where do we take refuge? What do we do with our fears?
My close friend Zaine is planning a trip to Brazil next week to visit her beloved aging parents and family. She fears flying--and it is a 12 1/2 hour trip! She's been watching YouTube videos to help her with her anxiety. The thing she plans on doing though first as she boards: pray and listen to her praise music in Portuguese.
I've heard it. She sings it every morning to me as we eat breakfast together before school. Her singing the words I cannot understand, moves me to worship and a peace for the day ahead.
She will be taking refuge in her Lord and Savior to calm her fears, closing her eyes and humming her hymns in her native language; finding that peace that surpasses her fears.
I thought I had conquered my fear of speaking in front of people. As a small group leader, prayer warrior and various times of teaching opportunities at school, I feel confidant most the time when I speak and teach.
I was asked to participate in a Sunday sermon series, to "video tape" a response to the Hope and...just so happens, the CONFIDENCE I have in the Lord.
First take...I was so nervous, so jumbled, so unprepared...my fear won and I couldn't rest until I was given a chance at a second take a week later. That my friend, is called grace.
With my fear in check, my prayer lifted to the Lord, my words gathered in my heart and my Bible open to hear His voice, to take refuge in Him, the shadow of His wings calmed my fears and I re-shot the video with success and peace.
Fear gets all our physical, emotional, irrational and sometimes impulsive thoughts and actions going crazy. That human emotion of anxious and unknowing moments can cause one to isolate, become angry, feel sadness and hopelessness--keep us from living a life meant to be joyful.
Satan knows our weaknesses and if fear is one of them and it will prevent our light from shining, you know that is going to be the weapon he wants to use. Ramping up those feelings and fears...especially if we keep far enough away from the refuge of the Lord is overwhelming. I believe in prayer warrior girl friends and I am thankful I can pray with others to help me be a conqueror through Christ. I know who my Stronghold is and in Him, will I cast my fears and anxieties, for He is a God I can surely rest my head and heart on.
Thank you Lord for being our refuge, our stronghold in times of trouble. No matter where we are in this world, darkness lies all around us. Help us Lord to stay in Your light and trust in the bigger picture of all You have for us in this world that is in need of You. Lord, we pray that we do not live in fear, but live in confidence from all that You have shown us, that You are sovereign and Jehovah-Sabaoth, our Protector. My little fear of being video-taped is nothing compared to the fear faced by others living through and surviving the terrorists attacks tonight. Lord, we pray for the First-Responders, the victims and families of this cowardly act. We ask for the leaders of free nations to respond with resolve to keep our nations secure in the freedoms we guard with our heart, soul and sacrifice. Amen.