After a phone call yesterday, I felt real fear. For a few moments I was “Chicken Little,” certain that the sky was falling. What will I do? How will I ever deal with this? Realizing that descending into panic is an exercise in futility, I collected myself, turned to the Lord in prayer, put on some music that encouraged my soul, and talked with a friend. In a matter of moments I found my footing and put things into the proper perspective. The problem that I face is a real one, the potential for a negative impact on my life exists. It is not denial that secures me, it is faith in my status as God’s child and the sure knowledge that all things that come into my life are known to Him and – if I give them to Him – will ultimately serve His purposes.
Fear can do strange and terrible things to us, if we allow it to take hold of us. Don’t give it a foothold! There is a better way.
In Exodus God tells us the story of the deliverance of His people from Egypt. After the 10 plagues Pharaoh finally let them go, sending a nation of slaves off with Moses leading the way. “When word reached the king of Egypt that the Israelites were not planning to return to Egypt after three days, Pharaoh and his officials changed their minds. “What have we done, letting all these slaves get away?” they asked. So Pharaoh called out his troops and led the chase in his chariot.” (Exodus 14:5-6, NLT) God’s people were camped at the Red Sea, water in front of them, the elite forces of Egypt coming at them from behind. Guess what happened! Yes, they panicked! In spite of all they had seen God do, they let fear choke them. “As Pharaoh approached, the Israelites looked up and saw them—Egyptians! Coming at them! They were totally afraid. They cried out in terror to God. They told Moses, “Weren’t the cemeteries large enough in Egypt so that you had to take us out here in the wilderness to die? What have you done to us, taking us out of Egypt? Back in Egypt didn’t we tell you this would happen? Didn’t we tell you, ‘Leave us alone here in Egypt—we’re better off as slaves in Egypt than as corpses in the wilderness.’ ” (Exodus 14:10-12, The Message)
Can you identify with their terror? There were no obvious solutions, no place to turn – from a human point of view. How like our lives, isn’t it? But Moses reminded them that they belonged to the living God. “Don’t be afraid. Stand firm and watch God do his work of salvation for you today. Take a good look at the Egyptians today for you’re never going to see them again.” (Exodus 14:13, The Message) It was now faith-walking time for Moses. What was he going to do? What did God have in mind?
Apparently, he kept his own fear hidden from everyone but cried out to God in private. I love the text. “And the Lord said to Moses, “Why do you cry to Me? Tell the children of Israel to go forward.” (Exodus 14:15, NKJV) Stop bawling and get moving. Then the Lord told him to get out in front of the people and stand beside the Red Sea. There he was to raise his staff and hold it over the water. God said it would part and the people would walk through on dry land! I wonder if Moses wanted to say, “God, You said to do what?” The man exercised faith and did what God asked. Only then did the path to deliverance appear.
Are you paralyzed by some problem? Are you sitting around crying about it, worrying over it, fretting? Take control of your emotions. Call a friend of mature faith and let them pray for you, counsel you. Hit your knees and not to cry, but to worship and wait! Murmur the truth about God’s sovereign power, His ability to change disaster to deliverance. “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth! ” (Psalm 46:10, NKJV)
Here’s the word from the Word. I pray we will own it and live the Truth!
“I know that you sincerely trust the Lord . . . This is why I remind you to fan into flames the spiritual gift God gave you . . . For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline. So you must never be ashamed to tell others about our Lord. . . . It is God who saved us and chose us to live a holy life. He did this not because we deserved it, but because that was his plan long before the world began—to show his love and kindness to us through Christ Jesus.” (2 Timothy 1:5-9, NLT)
My Lord Knows The Way
My Lord knows the way
Thro’ the wilderness,
All I have to do is follow!
Strength for today is mine always,
And all I need for tomorrow.
My Lord knows the way,
Thro’ the wilderness,
All I have to do is follow.
Sidney Edward Cox
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