Tag Archives: Belief

The Fear That Is Wisdom

Disaster and destruction follows disaster and destruction in the world we live in, hurricane upon hurricane, earthquake upon earthquake, and wildfire upon wildfire. The news also carries stories of the tensions between nations and the dangers of nuclear proliferation or attack. We wonder when the terrorists will strike again. We wonder when the war in Syria will finally end.  Anxiety and fear are rampant.

Jesus teaches His disciples what signs will signal the end times and His return. (See Matthew 24)  He tells of unequaled distress on earth, such distress that all would die, if those days were not shortened. He tells of the sun being darkened and the moon not giving its light. He warns of a day during that historic, monumental distress, a day that no one but His father knows. On that day, He will come on the clouds in the sky with great glory and all those who have believed in Him will be caught up with Him to escape the horrors of earth.  “…That is how it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. Two men will be in the field; one will be taken and the other left. Two women will be grinding with a hand mill; one will be taken and the other left.” Does this teaching inspire fear?  It well ought.

We learn in Psalm 111:10 that: “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.”  Let fear send you running to God to learn how to escape His just judgment on mankind. John Newton’s ageless hymn, Amazing Grace, says, “Twas Grace that taught my heart to fear, and Grace my fears relieved.”

God is Love.  Love is warning us, and Love is reminding us that He has made a way of escape.  All of us have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.  All of us are unclean and powerless before the Mighty God of the Universe.  See a man upon a cross.  His name is Jesus, the Son of God, the Lamb of God.  His shed blood can wash away your sin and make you clean.  Believe in Him.

Fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom;  the end of fear is love.  The apostle John tells us in I John 4:18, “There is no fear in love. Perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.”

When Love Incarnate, Jesus Christ, washes us clean, we are relieved of fear.  For those of us who have believed in that love, we listen to the news and watch the times with a growing sense that our Lord’s return is closer than when we first believed.  We are comforted knowing the day is coming when there will be no more sorrow and no more tears.  The One who gave Himself for us will dry away our final tears as He welcomes us home to be with Him forever.

Be afraid; it’s right and appropriate. But don’t stop at fear; go on to Love.  Run to Him. Now. Don’t slow down and don’t stop until you are safe in His arms.

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While looking in October for some yarn at one of my favorite shops, a Fiber and Book Store, I saw a Little Golden Book, titled Everything I Need to Know I Learned From A Stars Wars. I smiled, chuckling to myself, and thought; here’s the perfect novelty Christmas gift for my sons who are 40 and 38 and grew up loving the Star Wars Saga.   I purchased yarn and the books.

I have read the book, enjoying the pictures and content. Although some of its message conveys wise and valuable counsel for children and adults who are kids at heart,  I KNOW THAT EVERYTHING I NEED TO KNOW I LEARNED FROM MY BIBLE.

Here is some of the truth the Bible has taught me about God and myself and some of the realities I live in because I have believed that truth:

God created me; He wove me together in my mother’s womb.

He has loved me with an everlasting love.

He has loved me so much that He sent His Son Jesus to come to earth to live and bleed and die and rise again so that all my sin and shame could be washed away by His shed blood.

Jesus has equipped me and sent me on a meaningful journey, an exciting, challenging mission.

He has been traveling on this mission with me; in fact He is always holding on to my right hand. He has promised that no one can ever snatch me out of His hand and that He will never leave me or forsake me.

He has promised to give me wisdom whenever I need it and ask for it. He has promised to lead and guide me on this mission.   Sometimes I have been afraid, really afraid, near terrified, but He has calmed and quieted my heart and mind.

His Spirit has kept giving me power to obey His command to say no to anger, rage and pride. His Spirit has kept giving me power to walk in His Light and to be kind and compassionate and to forgive and bless those that hurt me. When I have failed to do these things, He has picked me up and told me to try again.

With God nothing has been impossible. Jesus has promised that I can do all things because He strengthens me. He has told me to keep believing because faith is the victory that overcomes the world.

Jesus has said that He is going to rule and reign on planet earth and that I get to be with Him. I have been looking forward to this for a long time.

The Eternal God, who has always ruled the universe and still does, has given me everlasting life and has promised I am always going to be with Him in heaven forever because I believe in His Son.   I’ve banked my life on this promise.

I obtained my role in THIS REAL STORY, THE BEST ONE EVER TOLD, by believing its truth and trusting its PLAYWRIGHT/DIRECTOR.

Tryouts remain open. The only talent required is a willingness to trust THE PLAYWRIGHT and to follow HIS DIRECTION.  Come one and all.  You are loved, accepted and needed.

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A Goal and A Job For 2015

Faith:  confident belief in the truth; belief not based on logical proof or material evidence; loyalty to a person or a thing.

“For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith – and this not from  yourselves, it is the gift of God – not by works, so that no one can boast.  For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus, to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”  Ephesians 2: 8-9

Believe:  to accept as true or real; to expect; to have faith or confidence.

Work:  mental effort or activity directed toward the production or accomplishment of something.

In John 6, we read of a crowd asking Jesus what they should do to do the works of God.   Jesus answered, ” The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent.”

We are NOT saved by works, but we are saved FOR WORKS.  Before we get conceited or proud of our works or weary and burned out by them, let us remember: the work we are saved to do is to BELIEVE IN JESUS.   Perhaps much of what we do for the Kingdom of God is not effective because we extend energy devoid of belief.  Perhaps we extend energy believing the lie that the advancement of the Kingdom depends on us, rather than on the Power of God, working through us.  Perhaps we move forward without seeking God’s guidance and blessing in believing prayer.  All our efforts are wasted if they are not fueled by believing prayer.

Sometimes we are called to stand still and watch God work.  Sometimes we are called to work with him.  But we are always called to believe him.

Let us remember that all that is accomplished for the Kingdom of God is the work of God.  He gets the GLORY.   We have the great and awesome privilege of believing him, of cheering him on, of praising him.

Lord Jesus,  help me remember that my goal and my work for the year ahead  is simply and profoundly TO BELIEVE  YOU.

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A Coin With Two Sides

A year ago my husband fought a battle with stage 3 lymphoma.  I believed Jesus is the healer.  I believed Jesus could heal my husband.  I prayed believing for that healing, but I did not know whether the Lord would heal my husband on this earth or in heaven.

I prayed yielding my will and desires to the will and desires of  God for my husband.  These two truths freed me to yield to God:   We are always loved and God is always good – he is righteous and holy in all his ways.

Trust is like a two sided coin.  On one side is a believing face, and on the other side there is yielding face.  Trust is the sum of believing God and yielding to him.

Our Lord prayed for his Father to spare him from the suffering of the crucifixion.  He knew God could – he believed God could.  But in the end, he yielded his will to the will of God.

I think it is possible to believe God without yielding to him.   I think it is possible to yield to God without really believing him.  I want to keep trusting God like my Savior did, believing and yielding in tandem with all my heart and mind and soul.

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To Believe Or Not To Believe

To believe or not to believe God.  Is that your question?  Is that your dilemma?   In a sense, this dilemma is the ultimate wager.

Blaise Pascal said, “Let us weigh the gain and the loss, in wagering that God is. Consider these alternatives: if you win, you win all, if you lose, you lose nothing. Do not hesitate, then, to wager that he is.”

Jesus said that he is the way, the truth and the life.  He said that no one comes to God the Father except through him.  (John 14:6)

Understand to believe Jesus or believe to understand Jesus?  Is that your dilemma?

Saint Augustine said, “Understanding is the reward of faith. Therefore seek not to understand that you may believe, but believe that you may understand.”

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Door To Christian Faith

I get a plethora of spam.   Although most of it gets deleted without thought, sometimes I wonder whether a comment is authentic.  Today I want to respond to the unknown someone who said I almost make him/her a believer and who said I make assumptions or presuppositions.

If I almost make you a believer, I say, “Good.”   My deepest desire is for this blog to make others thirsty for what I have:  a wondrous  relationship with the Heavenly Father.   The invitation to join the family is open to all.   This wild adventure of faith is an equal opportunity for all who would follow Jesus.

I do not know what assumptions you think I make, since you did not identify them.   I have no proof for my faith, but I do have the evidence of the empty tomb of Jesus Christ and the fact no one ever produced his dead body.  Believing some of the theories to explain those facts takes more faith for me than believing he proved he was the Son of God by his resurrection and his ascension to heaven.  I believe the Old Testament scriptures because he believed them and taught them.  I believe the New Testament scriptures because they were written by eye witnesses of his death and resurrection or those who were taught by the eye witnesses.

Walk with Jesus through the Gospel of John and see for yourself.  Or watch the story according to Luke unfold on the Jesus DVD.  Begin the journey through the obstacles that block your door to Christian faith.

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