I was an unplanned observer of people this week.
Circumstances in our world prompted me to take notice of how people responded and lived their lives because of them. I watched how some functioned out of faith and others functioned out of fear.
And, let me tell you, God taught me much through my observations.
From where do we function, faith or fear?
I watched a young woman boldly stand up to her fear. She looked at it straight in the eye and reminder this fear Someone else was in charge. She didn’t back down, even though everything in her was screaming to do so. Her actions and words encouraged others to do the same. It was incredible. She was functioning out of faith.
A man I’ve come to know through our blogs is also one who I observed function out of faith this week. Actually, he’s been doing that as long as I’ve known him. His prognosis is not good, yet he pours his words into the lives of others. Fear is never an option for him, but his faith is boldly evident. His example is quite inspiring to me.
On the other hand, however, I saw others allow fear to step in and take control. I saw how fear overrode logic and replaced peace with panic. Instead of pouring out positive into the lives of others, I heard fear prompt degrading, discouraging, and demeaning words. Instead of inspiring others, I watched fear almost become an epidemic through an entire group, spreading from one person to another, all beginning from one individual.
God opened my eyes to how fear is ugly and how faith is beautiful. He reminded me we each have a choice every moment of every day. Will we choose to live in fear or will we live in faith? Will we cling to what we know to be true of God, or will we allow fear to override this truth? When events of this world happen beyond our control, how will we react? How we choose not only affects how we live our lives, but it affects the impact we have on others as well.
It makes a difference from where we function… faith or fear.
The longer your focus and mine lingers on the world, the more it becomes more tempting to react in panic. The longer it lingers on our Lord, the more we’ll react in peace, in encouragement, and in security.
Don’t panic. I’m with you. There’s no need to fear for I’m your God. I’ll give you strength. I’ll help you. I’ll hold you steady, keep a firm grip on you. Isaiah 41:10
Friend, are you fearful? Even though these words were written for Israel many years ago, we can accept them for ourselves today. We can live in the shadows of these living-giving, courage-prompting words of God.
Allow them to penetrate your mind, your heart, your world. Write them on our hearts, in our journals, on our bathroom mirrors. Let’s let them sink in deep. We can rest easy tonight knowing God’s got a firm grip on us. He’s with us.
Thanks be to God!
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Fear can be so debilitating. But God gives us strength. The words “Do not be afraid” appear 365 times in Scripture. One for each day of the year. I don’t think this is a coincidence at all.