Nelson Price said, "We need God's 'fear-nots' for our 'fear-knots'."
Chester Swor asked, "Are you driving with your brakes on?"
These days we all have fear-knots and headaches, heartaches and even soul-aches. Fear can affect us in so many ways and we must learn to deal with it.
II Timothy 1:7 states, "For God has not given us the spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind."
I John 4:18 likewise emphasizes "there is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out all fear." So God has helped in times of war as well as in times of peace.
First, we walk toward our fears when we walk by faith, and not by sight. (II Cor. 5:7) Reason has its faith and faith has its reasons, but when we cannot understand, we must stand by faith on the solid rock of God's character, God's word and God's ways!
In 1991, four friends of mine were killed in a plane crash near Newcastle, Oklahoma. I cannot understand the 'whys' of life, but I stand firmly on the Who of life. Do you know of anyone better? This requires faith to let go and let God! By faith, we let Him deal with our past sins...we make Him Lord of the present situations and we place our future in His hands.
Many times, as perhaps now, we see the circumstances and not Christ. We see obstacles and adversaries more clearly than we see God. Remember, the Israelites could not enter the Promised Land because they walked by sight (giants seemed so huge) and not by faith (God seemed so small).
I have a feeling that some of you have never made a friend of God by faith, so you walk by sight in fear....and not by faith in peace! There are some good fears, but the best is the "fear of God which is the beginning of wisdom" (Prov. 1:7). This really starts when we accept Jesus as Savior.
Secondly, walking toward your fears means that we walk in the power of the Spirit of God and not in the weakness of our flesh.
Romans 8:14, 15 says:
"For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God; and you have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear."
I John 4:4 emphasizes:
"Greater is the power within you than any power in the world". The weakness of the flesh looks more to the Saddam Husseins of the world than to Christ and the Word of God.
Let us learn and live Matthew 28:18-20:
"And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in Heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore and teach all nations baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you and lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world."
Lastly, walking toward your fears means that we walk with the Shepherd and not satan. Psalm 23 and John 10 emphasize the blessings of walking with the Great Shepherd, Jesus!
Someone has well said, "If Jesus had done nothing more than to lead us to call God, "Father", it would have been worth His coming". But He did much more and we need to have that thought (conviction) daily.
Do you remember the difference that it made when your earthly father walked with you in the dark or when he was with you in a dark house?
Psalm 23 tells us what we have if we walk with the Shepherd:
The Lord is my Shepherd (Perfect Salvation)
I shall not want (Perfect Satisfaction)
He maketh me to lie down in green pastures (Perfect Rest)
He leadeth me beside the still waters (Perfect Refreshment)
He restoreth my soul (Perfect Restoration)
He leadeth me in the path of righteousness for his name's sake (Perfect Guidance)
I will fear no evil (Perfect Protection)
Thou art with me (Perfect Company)
Thy rod and thy staff (Perfect Comfort)
Thou preparest a table (Perfect Provision)
Thou anoinest my head (Perfect Consecration)
My cup runneth over (Perfect Joy)
Goodness and mercy shall follow me (Perfect Care)
I will dwell forever (Prefect Destiny)
So, it is my prayer for you during all of your days, that you will know and experience all of the above.
In England, a huge banquet was being held for many famous and important people. An actor was asked to recite something for the audience. His oration of the 23rd Psalm brought much applause.
When an elderly pastor was asked to recite something, he also recited the 23rd Psalm with much feeling and emotion. When he finished, the crowd was silent.
The actor stood and said, "The difference between my recitation and his, is that I knew the Shepherd's Psalm....while he knows the Shepherd!"
It makes a great difference in life ...and in death...if you know the great Shepherd.
Do you know Him? Romans 3:23....6:23....5:8....10:8-11 will tell you how.
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...in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them... 2 Cor 5:19
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Aloha Pastor Travis, Thank you for your words and for pointing us to Christ !! We miss you in Hawaii.