We have a lot happening in the world these days -- increased conflict in the middle-east, Russia flexing its muscle, the beheading of Christians in Iraq and Syria, threats of Ebola and other viruses spreading, ISIL's infiltration of various countries including the United States, and more. Throw in the blood moons and the shmita and it's no surprise that some of us are a bit on edge.
In recent months, I've heard many people giving many opinions on these matters, as I'm sure you have as well. Some believe we are seeing the "end times" playing out right before our eyes. Others believe the tribulation has already begun. And still others believe a number of the seals spoken of in Revelation have already been broken, and that some of the trumpets have even been blown.
Regardless of where we may be in the "end times" timeline, I've been seeing something begin to arise that concerns me -- in fact, it concerns me greatly. What I see, is fear rising up in God's people. Fear of what is happening in the world. Fear of being attacked. Fear of what might be at our own door. Even fear for our very lives. I even see people spreading fear with theories, rumors, and assumptions, and see people declaring fear over others, including God's children. This move of fear is in its infancy, still, I see fear trying to grip the hearts of man and overtake them.
Personally, I am much more concerned about fear itself rather than the threats that are causing the fear. Reason being, if we allow fear to take hold of us, then it can control us. Fear can cloud our thoughts and cause us to act in an irrational and emotionally driven manner rather than acting in accordance to God's word and direction. Not to mention, fear is the enemy of faith.
So regardless of where we may be in the "end times" timeline, let's not forget the words of our Lord concerning these times.
Matthew 24:6-8 (NIV) You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, BUT SEE TO IT THAT YOU ARE NOT ALARMED. Such things must happen, BUT THE END IS STILL TO COME. Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places. All these are the BEGINNING of birth pains.
Jesus knew fear would try to come upon His people, hence His admonition to not be alarmed. We have not been given a spirit of fear, and as such, we should seek to do as our Lord instructs. (2 Timothy 1:7)
Do not give any room to fear -- not thoughts of fear, not words of fear, not those who are declaring fear, not anything. Do not allow the things that are happening in the world to shake you. But if they do, use them to motivate you to sit at the feet of Almighty God. Equip yourself with God's word, and know that the best way of combating fear, as well as anything that may cause it, is to know God, to be close to God, and to have faith and confidence in God in all things. Don't give in to fear or to anything that may incite it, as the enemy would love to have us do. Stand up and stand strong in the Lord. And as God told Joshua, which is still true to this day...
Joshua 1:9 (NIV) Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.
Father, bless and strengthen Your Children. Rebuke fear on their behalf, and cause them to stand strong on Your Word. Draw each one near to You, and draw near to them. Teach them Your word, Your ways, and that You are trustworthy. Give them peace as well as boldness, knowing that in the world there will be trouble, but the Lord has overcome the world. And Father, drench each one in Your Holy Spirit, and send Your angels to watch over Your children, to guide them, to protect them, and to keep them safe. Provide for their every need, Father. We thank You Father that You have heard our prayers, and we thank You Father that You have answered them! In Jesus Name we pray and agree... Amen!
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