Ebola. Clowns. ISIS. Dark. Israel and Pakistan conflict. Blood Moons. Abandonment. Birds. Giant squid. Vaccines. No vaccines. Declining economy. Drought. Winter storms. Cancer. Haunted Houses. Spiders. Snakes. Tornadoes. Mark Driscoll. Bridges. Dolls. Hurricanes. Ebola.Government conspiracy theories. Ebola. Failure. Bank accounts. Ebola. Taxes.
“I will keep him at perfect peace, whose mind is fixed on me.” “Fear not, for I am with you.” “Be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged.” “He freed me from all my fears.” “The Lord is my light and my salvation whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life of whom shall I be afraid?” “When I am afraid, I put my trust in you.” “Perfect love casts out all fear.” “God has not given you a spirit of fear.”
Fear. We’ve all experienced it. Sometimes it creeps up gently, slowly and it’s hours before we realize the reason we can’t breathe. Sometimes it comes quickly and fiercely like there’s no air in the room. Other times it’s bombarding, the constant continuance of bad news. Yet, over and over I read where God tell us to “fear not”. “Do not be afraid”. But honestly, I wonder if He really knew what He was telling us. Don’t fear? Umm…have you heard about Ebola? Do not be afraid…God, have you seen my bank account? I haven’t given you a spirit of fear…yeah, but do you know what’s happening in the world? Actually, yes. Yes he does. He knows;He’s always known.
As Christians our job is to bring the kingdom of heaven, “on earth as it is in heaven”. What is the Kingdom of Heaven you ask? Well, I have an answer. Romans 14:17 tells us that the Kingdom of Heaven is wait for it… Righteousness, Peace and Joy. Whoa! Peace and Joy and Righteousness? Not fear? Not worry? Nope. Peace.
You see as children of the most high God, our job is to be the peace in the midst of the storm.The very same spirit that Jesus had when he easily called out “peace be still” in the middle of the storm, lives inside you. I understand that fear is all around us. It’s so clearly evident on peoples faces, Facebook posts and news. But our job is peace. We are the “peace be still”.
Many times in my life I have been told that Christians are to change culture. Be in the world but not of it. Yet in the midst of people’s fear, instead of telling them about the one who takes fear away, we join in the fear with them. Instead of being the peace, we help remove the peace from the situation. Instead of bringing the kingdom of God to earth, as it is in heaven, we simply forget we have authority. The answer to fear is…you. You are righteousness. You are joy. You are peace. You are the kingdom. Every time you walk outside or open your mouth to speak you are bringing the kingdom of God to earth.
I think it’s time we start saying. I am not afraid. Tell Cancer “we aren’t afraid of you.” Tell Ebola”You don’t worry me”. Tell your bank account, storms, and failure “My mind is at perfect peace”. Tell things you don’t understand, or paradigms you can’t control “perfect love cast out all fear”. Stop spreading fear with the rest of culture and start bombarding people with the Kingdom righteousness, peace and joy.
Better yet, tell a lost, hurting, and fearful world that you know who holds the future! Tell them that even though the news makes it look scary, and like there is not hope, that your God is the author of Peace. Am I saying that we walk around with our head in the clouds unaware of the things that are happening in the world? No. But I am saying that when fear creeps in, you simply say. “I am not afraid of you.” I’m not asking you to be fearless over night. I’m simply asking that we start to fear…less.