Fear

Fear closes in on us today the way water closes in around a sinking body. The fact that fear is continuously perpetuated and pulsated out in almost all avenues doesn’t help. Everywhere we turn, there is fear. Fear of the pandemic touching us or our loved ones. Fear that inflation and the rising cost of living will overwhelm our paychecks and force us to choose between one vital thing and others. Fear that we will be forced to lose our income, long awaited for retirement, or ability to provide for ourselves and our loved ones. Fear that our health will fail. Fear that we will lose our freedoms. Fear of punishment without cause. Fear that our cities will come under riots or attack. The list goes on.

You can’t see miracles unless you experience troubled times. Or perhaps I should say, miracles tend to illuminate your soul in ways they might not otherwise whenever they take place in a moment that rescues you unparalleled to any other. These days, troubles reach out to us on a regular basis. Where is God in the middle of all of this?

As I continue to work my way slowly through the Psalms, the following verse stood out to me this morning:

Restore to me the joy of Your salvation
And sustain me with a willing spirit.

Psalms 51:12

Before I had always focused on the first half, and yes it is true that He has restored the joy of His salvation more than once to me, but this day I especially was drawn to the fact that it is HE who sustains me with a willing spirit, because I know it’s that YES in my spirit that, over and over again, purges me and perfects me in His love. So much so that I can now more fully grasp what He means when He tells me:

 "There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves punishment, and the one who fears is not perfected in love.” 1 John‬ ‭4:18‬ ‭NASB1995

Ahhh, so fear is pushed out of us through a series of perfections when we say YES to His Spirit’s work in our lives! It’s the workout and building up of a spiritual muscle that makes us strong and confident, allows His peace to fill us and sustains a calm center no matter what chaos around us is taking place.

Follow me on this one for a moment… Have you ever lost a loved one, someone close to you? For those of us who have, we understand that, like love, grief never dies. Why? Because grief IS love. It is all the love that we have for that person that now has no place to go, because they are no longer there to receive it. Only the Lord can take away our sorrows and grief (wipe the tears from our eyes). Those who don’t know the Lord have sorrow continually, not just here on earth but throughout eternity.

So where am I going with all of this? Scripture tells us not to grieve the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 4:30). Knowing now that grief is love with no place to go helps to give us insight into what it means to grieve the Holy Spirit. Why? Because in essence when we continually say NO to His wooing, invitation for relationship, and work within us (“talk to the hand”, so to speak), all the love He has for us has no place to go.

SO… Psalms 51:12 becomes a good prayer we can pray, that He, by His Spirit, sustains a willingness within our spirit, so that His love washes over us and cleanses us from everything that doesn’t belong, including fear. Interestingly enough, the next verse (Psalms 51:13) says this:

Then I will teach transgressors Your ways,
And sinners will [l]be converted to You.

I could go into a whole new blog from this verse, as I believe it is part of the key to gaining insight with understanding, and shining brightly in the last days (as the prophet Daniel says).

The truth is, although miracles are more common than we might think, most of the time God doesn’t change your circumstances. He changes your heart, and you then change your circumstances! Charles Spurgeon once said, “How many times do we ask of God and have not because we wait not long enough at the door”? Don’t give up. Keep pressing in to a deeper relationship with Jesus the Christ.

If you don’t yet know Jesus personally but would like to, please reach out to me. I would love to introduce you to Him.

Amen, be blessed.

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