Today's topic of choice, whether on Facebook with friends and family, a text message from one of my sons, or during our group discussion, seemed to be fear, whether stated or implied. Joblessness, health worries, or even the dread of something happening in future, seemed pervasive today, even stirring up knee-jerk reactions as to why reasonable solutions couldn't.t work--without committing the matter to prayer. Worse than the disruption it causes to our peace of mind and our trust in Jesus, fear is a state of mind that opens one up to relentless attacks from the devil. I Peter 5:8 says it perfectly and absolutely:
Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.
Our son has been concerned about his student loans--who wouldn't be?!--so the Lord showed me the premier antidote to fear about provision: remember God's care for you in the past. I reminded him of how God fed and housed him during a tough time of joblessness, and even gave him the ability to pay three months' back rent with his barely-acquired job! And the scripture I shared with him was my paraphrase of Luke 12:24, how God feeds the birds, and how much more valuable are YOU than the birds? I pray that exhortation helps him put his current concern into perspective!
Words of wisdom came from another of my sons on his Facebook profile page today, concluding with the thought that no decisions should be made based on fear. I commented to the effect that he was absolutely right, and posted 2 Timothy 1:7,
For God has not given us the spirit of fear, but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.
If we are walking with the Lord, prayerfully seeking His guidance, being a good witness to others whom we come into contact with, and filling our minds with the Bible, we can pass through trials with comfort, courage, and a profound sense of encouragement for the future, because of Emmanuel, Jesus, "God with us."
Believers have the favor of the God of the entire universe upon us!
You know, I often forget the enormity of the trial we are involved in with Steve's Alzheimer's unless it happens to strike me when he cannot perform a commonplace action like opening a car door from the inside or outside. The Lord is just so active in areas of life, business and the ministry of encouraging others that I just do not feel oppressed OR depressed! And I have been led to create a joyful home for my husband, surrounding him with cheerful believers who make him feel useful and valued. And in the process, God is refining my character, too--a sign of God's favor towards me, corrections included!