As I write this post cruising at 30,000 feet on a Southwest jet, I’m reminded of some folks who have a fear of flying.
For many years John Madden, the CBS Sports color commentator crisscrossed the country each fall in a customized bus because he was afraid of flying.
Several years ago, a first-round NBA draft choice quickly ended his career with an unconditional release by his team because of his paralyzing fear of flying.
I hear folks expressing all kinds of fears. Fear for the future of our country. Fear of nuclear warfare. Fear of a collapsing economy. Fear of old age. Fear of sickness. Fear of death. And fear of our enemies.
The Hebrew writer offers a calming reassurance to our myriad of fears.
For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” So we may boldly say:
“The Lord is my helper;
I will not fear.
What can man do to me?”
The Bible is filled with examples of God’s providential care. He provided food and water for Israel during their wilderness wanderings. Joseph, though sold into slavery by his jealous brothers and later imprisoned by the false accusation of an immoral woman, still was blessed by God and prospered. He saved David from the envying murderous hand of King Saul. The three Hebrews boys were extradited unscathed from the burning fiery furnace. And Daniel was delivered unharmed from the Lion’s den.
Furthermore, Romans 8 reminds us of the spiritual blessings we have in Christ. Freedom from Condemnation. Freedom from defeat. Freedom from discouragement. And freedom from fear.
Because of God’s everlasting love. Jesus’ sacrificial death on the cross. And the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. As a result, we have been adopted into the family of God. We are heirs of God. We have his ear through prayer. And we can even find purpose in suffering through His divine promises and the hope of the Gospel.
No wonder Paul penned, “What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?” (Rom. 8:31).
The infidel cannot dull the Believer’s faith. The atheist cannot dampen the Christian’s hope. The haters of God cannot diminish His Divine love. And the devil himself and all demons of darkness cannot separate us from the fellowship of God.
Why be frightened by our foes? Or disturbed by our detractors? Or upset by our opposition?
When Martin Luther was confronted by those who sought to silence his criticism of the Catholic Church and his teaching of Scripture, his response was candid and courageous. “Here I stand, I cannot recant; I rest on the Word of God. Let God see to it.”
Regardless of what issues we face, troubles we encounter, or enemies we must battle, God is on our side. He will not fail us. Nor forsake us.
Is there a friend who’s forsaken you? A loved one who’s ridiculed your faith? A professor who’s mocked God and the Bible? A preacher who’s disappointed you? A pastor who’s failed you? Or a circumstance that’s overwhelmed you?
Be of good cheer. You are not alone. God’s here. God cares. God answers prayer. And God, in His time, will provide.
–Ken Weliever, The Preacherman