Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Whom Shall I Fear?

My daddy just stopped by! It is always such a treat when he shows up at our house. Especially after 5 years of living 2 and at one time 5 hours away, I am loving the closeness that allows us a quick face to face visit whenever we want.

He was talking to me about the body and how different things, including fear, can ultimately affect our health. I told him I was going to steal everything he said, blog about it, and call it my own. Alas, I realized I still have too much to learn about it and so I will have to postpone plagiarism for another day. He actually has been preaching a series about this at his church and I will be listening to the sermons on his church website. (which you can find by clicking here I believe the first one in the series is Thinking God's Thoughts part 1) 

While we were talking though, two things kept going through my mind. Because I swear I have..."Good grief I need to dust my living room!" Oh sorry, I swear I have ADD and am ALWAYS thinking something else while listening to others talk. But I really am listening too, honest I am. What echoed in my spirit over and over again was a passage in 2 Corinthians which says:
...take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. 2 Corinthians 10:5 

and an old hymn (I think it's a hymn, correct me if I am wrong you baptists) that says:


We were talking about something completely unrelated to yesterday's presidential election, but after my dad left my wandering mind couldn't help thinking of that and applying these two thoughts where my own concerns are - regarding this country.

Whether the person you voted for will be in the White House next year or not I think most of us would agree our country is lacking in some areas. This generally idealistic girl here has her own anxieties about where we are headed. So today I believe the Holy Spirit spoke to me, through the words of my father. My dads words hit their intended target with regards to what we were discussing but also brought clarity to this situation as well.

When doubts, when anger, when anxious feelings and all the "what ifs" rise up and tell me we are in trouble as a nation and there is no way out, I am to take those thoughts captive. Not to grab hold of them and let them control my day. But to confiscate them and if they are not lining up with what God says throw them out! 

What lines up? Here are just a few ideas:

For I have not given you a spirit of fear but of power, love and a sound mind. 2 Timothy 1:7

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11

Here is the promise (as my dad mentioned today) when we are thinking His thoughts instead of our own:

You will keep him in perfect peace, Whose mind is stayed on You, Because he trusts in You. Isaiah 26:3 

So I will take these thoughts captive, but what then?

I was so excited when I looked up 2 Corinthians 10:5. The words Paul spoke just before telling us to take our thoughts captive were exactly what I believed God had already been sharing with me.

For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does. The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. 2 Corinthians 10:3-5

I believe there are stronghold on us today, I fear our freedom to worship may be at risk. I see our freedom of speech slipping away a little bit more everyday. I tell you, I have wanted to storm through some doors on more than one occasion. It is time to be Bold as believers - bold and strong. We can wage war and be effective. I have the power, and also authority to storm the gates of hell.

I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you. Luke 10:19

We all know who our fight is ultimately against anyway.

For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Ephesians 6:12

There is another place I can go to confidently

Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need. Hebrews 4:16

We are the light in a world that is slipping rapidly into darkness. The freedom we have to fight this darkness can never be taken away from us. Remember who your fight is against. As you beg for mercy for this country also ask for mercy and grace to fight - as this dark world is always watching us.

One last thing I can do is this. I can encourage other Christ followers so that we do not lose hope. This next passage is lengthy but amazing, I encourage you to read it. 

So, as the Holy Spirit says: “Today, if you hear his voice,do not harden your hearts as you did in the rebellion, during the time of testing in the desert, where your fathers tested and tried me and for forty years saw what I did. That is why I was angry with that generation, and I said, ‘Their hearts are always going astray, and they have not known my ways.’ So I declared on oath in my anger, ‘They shall never enter my rest.’ ”See to it, brothers, that none of you has a sinful, unbelieving heart that turns away from the living God. But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called Today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness. We have come to share in Christ if we hold firmly till the end the confidence we had at first. As has just been said “Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts, as you did in the rebellion.” Hebrews 3:7-15
  1. Take your thoughts captive 
  2. Fight with boldness and your God given authority 
  3. Encourage one another daily
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