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Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Confronting your fears

Scott Peck begins his book, "The Road Less Traveled," with these memorable words:
"Life is difficult.  This is a great truth, one of the greatest truths.  It is a great truth because once we truly see this truth, we transcend it.  Once we truly know that life is difficult - once we truly understand and accept it - then life is no longer difficult.  Because one it is accepted, the fact that life is difficult no longer matters."
What's interesting about that quote is that as followers of Jesus, we know life is difficult.
Jesus tells us in John 16:33, "In this world you will have tribulation."
Paul agrees with that in Acts 14:22, "Through many tribulations we must enter the kingdom of God."
And we know that at the end of the age, the church will go through the most intense persecution of it's history. 
In Matthew 24:21, Jesus spoke of a "Great Tribulation," which "has not been seen form the beginning of the world until now, and never will be."
Throughout Scriptures it is made clear that the life of a believer is anything but easy.
I can't, in one blog, give all the different godly responses to difficulties that come our way.
I know that you, perhaps, as well as myself, are facing trials of immense proportions.
In that context, let's remember Proverbs 28:1.   I encourage you to memorize this verse today.
"The wicked man flees though no one pursues, but the righteous are as bold as a lion."
What that verse means is this:  You and I will be gripped with fear until we decide to confront it.
Fear will win everyday until you stand up, look that fear straight in the face, and say, "you are not going to win over me anymore.  By the help of God and with the power of the Holy Spirit, I am going to win against you."
Listen to me, you and I will never win until we rise up and confront the thing that is dragging us down.
Courage is nothing more than seeing the fear and taking action against it.
How many of you know the 95% Rule of Worry?  It goes like this:  95% of the things we worry about won't happen.
In other words to worry about something you can't change is useless. 
It is like sitting in a rocking chair - it gives you something to do but it doesn't take you anywhere.
Most of the time we worry about things that are never going to happen, and even if it does, we can deal with it when it does happen - with God's help.
Paul writes to Timothy in 2 Timothy 1:7, "For God did not give us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind."
God has given us a sound mind so that we can look at our problems.  He's given us power so we can overcome, and he's given us love so we can respond in his character.
Why not join me in walking with the "boldness of a lion today" - and confront your fears with God's help?

That's what courage is:  Facing and dealing with the impossible situations of life and still believing in God, still rejoicing in his goodness.
Just a thought for a Tuesday.

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