Fear can be an evil dictator, a ruthless warden of the mind, and a steel chain of bondage. It forces many to do the unthinkable... forcing a servant to bury his master's silver in the backyard. Making Peter swing his sword and cut off Malchus' ear. Driving Abraham to father an illegitimate son. Convincing Jonah to buy a ticket and get into a boat. Whispering murder and cover up to Moses. Here are three secrets to fearing less...
Worry, worry, worry! How many Christians lose their joy and peace because of worry! In this chapter, Paul tells us that the secure mind—the mind that is guarded by the peace of God—frees us from worry. Of course, the believer who does not have the single mind (chap. 1), the submissive mind (chap. 2), and the spiritual mind (chap. 3) can never have the secure mind. We must first live what Paul describes in the previous three chapters before we can claim the promises and provisions of this final chapter.
Isn’t it amazing how far God will lead us if we are willing?! In my previous post, we can imagine Peter launching out into the deep almost as a kind gesture. “Okay, I’ll do it, but I’m telling you we’re not going to catch anything.” He was not only willing to fail, but probably expecting it just to appease Jesus’ request and prove he knew what he was talking about. It was the obedience we discussed earlier with little faith to speak of.
While reading through a devotional book, my wife asked me this simple question, “What does being saved mean to you?” In a poor attempt to flex my spiritual muscles and show her how well versed I was in theology, I fired off a line of seminary answers that were sure to dazzle her mind. She responded with an answer I wasn’t suspecting, “No, that’s what being saved IS… I'm asking what does it MEAN to YOU!”
Before the sun sets again, I must tell you what you mean to me. I love you. I'm so proud of you and thankful for the opportunity to be your father. You are so beautiful in my eyes. I couldn't be happier with you. I have loved you since the moment that you were conceived. You are mine and I am yours. You bear my likeness, and I'm so glad - I hope you are, too. You are a masterpiece of creation, hand-woven with strength for a purpose. You have been gifted with so much potential and opportunity. I treasure you. I love you.
God often leads His people into situations that do not make sense to us. His ways are not always logical. Our perspective usually includes the shortest distance between two points, while God plans for the best route from an eternal perspective. After God had delivered Israel from Egypt, He led them right into a trap. They were penned in by the mountains, the desert, and the sea; this was not a reasonable strategy of escape. But God knew exactly what would happen, and this is exactly where Israel needed to be for reasons they would only understand later. God did not need their assistance, only their obedience. He was in total control and only needed their surrender for His plan to work perfectly (Ex. 14).