Facing Fear


Sunset over Mountain Range

From Pastor’s Desk: 12-25-16

Acts 18:9-10 One night the Lord spoke to Paul in a vision: “Do not be afraid; keep on speaking, do not be silent. 10 For I am with you, and no one is going to attack and harm you, because I have many people in this city.”

***

Sometimes it just takes an encouraging word from the Lord to keep on doing what you are doing not to be distracted or deterred from the call He has placed in your heart.

Rarely do I think of Paul as a fearful person. But considering the verses, evidently he faced fear just like any other. Otherwise why would have it been necessary to receive a word such as this? Why the necessity for the Lord to affirm his calling? What would have prompted the reassurance that he was not alone in the task for which God had called him?

One great difference between Paul and the church today is not that he was never faced with fear, but what he did when faced with it. “Tuck tail and run?” I see nowhere in Scripture where he did that. But I do see an attitude “Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead” and, facing down fears that would arise on occasion, he said, “I strain to reach the end of the race and receive the prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us up to heaven.” (Phil. 3:13)

To qualify those words, Paul had prefaced them with “I don’t mean to say that I have already achieved these things or that I have already reached perfection! But I keep working toward that day when I will finally be all that Christ Jesus saved me for and wants me to be. No, dear brothers and sisters, I am still not all I should be, but I am focusing all my energies on this one thing…”

Reader, if you’ve lived any time at all in Christ, you recognize the fact that devil is not going allow you an easy time. Rather, he will do everything he can to make your life “hell on earth.” That’s what he does. Like Walt Trumbo, my friend and pastor of years gone by used to say, “He wouldn’t be a very good devil if he didn’t.”

Fear? You’re going to face it! What you do when it comes is the deciding factor! The Lord will always be there to reaffirm you’re calling and let you know you are never alone.

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