Bible, Faith, God, Uncategorized

Holy Fear

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“The fear of God is the death of every other fear. Like a mighty lion, it chases all other fears before it.”

Charles Spurgeon

 

Copperheads, Cottonmouths, Rattlesnakes, and Coral Snakes make their home in Southeast Texas, which is also my home. And yes, we’ve got alligators. You’d think with the danger of  venomous snakes and alligators I’d never leave my house. My husband loves alligators so we tend to go searching those out. I’ve learned to respect the gators since I usually see them from a safe distance. I really don’t want to encounter a snake though. Every time I am working in my yard I pray that God will protect me from snakes and any other scary creature or enormous insect.

It’s one thing to be afraid of snakes and alligators, and all sorts of other things, but what about the fear of God? Is God just waiting to take us out? Should we all run and hide and fear his wrath? Should we live in constant terror just waiting for lightning to strike us? No! To fear God is to show respect, reverence, awe. The Hebrew word “yir’ah” means fear, terror, or fearing. It also means reverence, respect, holy wonder, or awe.

At least 300 times the Bible mentions the fear of God.

“Now fear the Lord and serve him with all faithfulness. Throw away the gods your forefathers worshiped beyond the River and in Egypt, and serve the Lord,” (Joshua 24:14). 

“But be sure to fear the Lord and serve him faithfully with all your heart; consider what great things he has done for you,” (1 Samuel 12:24).

“In the land of Uz there lived a man whose name was Job. This man was blameless and upright; he feared God and shunned evil,” (Job 1:1). 

“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom; all who follow his precepts have good understanding. To him belongs eternal praise,” (Psalm 111:10). 

“The Lord delights in those who fear him, who put their hope in his unfailing love,” (Psalm 147:11).

“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and discipline,” (Proverbs 1:7).

“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and knowledge of the Holy One is understanding,” (Proverbs 9:10). 

“A wise man fears the Lord and shuns evil, but a fool is hotheaded and reckless,” (Proverbs 14:16). 

“His mercy extends to those who fear him, from generation to generation,” (Luke 1:50).

“Show proper respect to everyone: Love the brotherhood of believers , fear God, honor the King,” (1 Peter 2:17).

“Then a voice came from the throne, saying: “Praise our God, all you his servants, you who fear him, both small and great!” (Revelation 19:5).

There are many more verses on fearing God. I think you get the picture of just how important the fear of the Lord is. But What does it really mean to fear God? It means He is on the throne. God is Lord over all. There is none higher than God. There is no equal to God. Satan and God are not battling it out for control. They are not counterparts. God has no counterpart.

Fear of God means I know what God is capable of. I know He rules over all. I know I deserve death and hell, but He saved my life. And yes, God does have wrath. Read Revelation. Those of us in Christ, are saved from that wrath because of Jesus taking our place on the cross. Jesus died for all and paid the price for our sins.

When I fear God, I humbly bow to the one who holds it all in His mighty hands. It keeps me in my place and reminds me that God is always in His place, on the throne. Then as a daughter to The King I can come boldly to His throne of grace. “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). 

I don’t have to shudder in fear that God will strike me down any time He’s not pleased with me. I’m covered in the blood of Jesus and I’m a co-heir with Christ. “Now if we are children, then we are heirs-heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if we indeed share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory,” (Romans 8:17). 

The one true God loves you and loves me. He wants a relationship with us and we get that privilege because of Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross. So don’t cower in fear but come humbly to the cross. Give God the praise He deserves. Let’s worship Him, and thank Him daily for who He is. Awesome, Holy God.

Love you all,

Meghan

 

All scripture is from the New International Version © 1978.

 

God, Trials, Uncategorized

God Never Sleeps

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I couldn’t sleep. After tossing and turning for a while, I got up. It didn’t seem fair to wake my husband and include him in my insomnia. I went down the hall to the guest room and looked out the window. The moon was bright and beautiful. I grabbed my phone and headed outside to take a picture of one of my favorite things. It was calm. Peaceful. My anxious heart was soothed.

The moon always makes me smile. It reminds me of God’s purpose in everything and His awesome power. The moon helps set the tides in the oceans. True to God’s style, it’s beautiful, and bonus, is a light for the night sky. That’s pretty awesome. When I look at the moon it reminds me that God is still in control, even when I think He has forgotten me.

God never sleeps. When I was wide awake with an overactive, over thinking, trying to figure everything out mind, God was working. He doesn’t sleep because, well, He’s God. He met me in my worry. Through the still night and the illuminated moon God whispered, “I love you. I have a plan. Trust me.”

God is always at work in your life and in mine. Sometimes, we can’t see the progress. Sometimes, it’s night, and we are wide awake with worry. It can be so quiet that we assume He’s not doing anything. That is a lie. Sometimes, He is doing His most important work on our behalf, at night. Isaiah 64:4 “Since ancient times no one has heard, no ear has perceived, no eye has seen any God besides you, who acts on behalf of those who wait for him” (NIV). 

Do you feel like it’s been continually night for a very long time? Are you waiting for the sun to rise on your circumstance or in your heart? Take courage. God is working out something fantastic for you in your night time. There are wonderful things occurring at night. Rest. Restoration. Growth. Healing. Miracles. There is beauty at night. The moon. The stars. Quietness. As you wait in your night time, remember that God never sleeps and is at work for you.

During the night talk to Him. Psalm 42:8b “at night his song is with me- a prayer to the God of my life” (NIV). The night can be a great time to have an honest conversation with your Heavenly Father. There are no distractions. Just your thoughts. Use those night time moments to give it all to Him.  Even if fear or stress is keeping you awake, God is still there waiting for you. He can give you peace. He wastes nothing. Not even a sleepless night.

Psalm 8:3-4 “When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, what is man that you are mindful of him, the son of man that you care for him? You made him a little lower than the heavenly beings and crowned him with glory and honor” (NIV).

God set the moon and stars in place. He loves you and me, and cares for us! We are so important to God that He crowned us with glory and honor. If He keeps the moon in place than He can handle whatever is concerning you today. Whether it’s a sleepless night, or you are in a season of perpetual night, waiting on the Lord. Be encouraged. The morning is coming! Hold on tight to Jesus. He’s already holding on to you.

Love you all,

Meghan

God

It Only Looks Scary

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I used to be a little freaked out by dragonflies. They are really loud when they fly and they are kind of creepy looking. I thought they would sting me. Dragon is in their name so they must be scary, right? Some people are fascinated by dragonflies and think they are beautiful. I’ve grown to appreciate them but I’m not a big fan of insects in general. Living in Southeast Texas I’ve seen things. Large things. Large bugs to be exact. I won’t go into that now. Another time. What I have learned about dragonflies is they actually do a lot of good. They eat bugs. Lots of them. Especially mosquitoes. And where I live, that’s important.

Sometimes events or situations can appear very scary. Like how I assumed a dragonfly might do me harm. Many times much bigger, much scarier things will paralyze us. Our mind can go right to the worst case scenario and we are gripped with fear. I call this the ‘What if….’ problem. What if the doctor says cancer? What if I lose my job? What if she leaves? What if I fail? What if I never get better? What if. What if. What if. Fill in the blank. It can go on and on. I’ve been in that place of fear many times.

Other times our fears are based on real life experiences where we’ve had bad things happen to us and we don’t want to experience that pain again. Or, we are smack dab in the middle of facing our worst fears. The job loss, the death of a loved one, disease, depression, loneliness, physical pain, and so many more. There are multiple, valid reasons that cause us to be afraid. Fear is part of our human condition. It is unavoidable. We all will experience fear.

But, and this is a big BUT, there is hope. We do not have to stay in a place of fear as Christ followers. Fear is not from God, but it will draw us to Him. There are hundreds of verses on fear in the Bible. He is the opposite of that. God promises peace, a sound mind, and His power. He will never leave us. His word says it. If His word says it, than it’s true because God does not lie (Titus 1:2).

Here are just some of the many verses on fear.

“The Lord is the one who goes ahead of you; He will be with you. He will not fail you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed” (Deuteronomy 31:8, NASB). 

“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” (Joshua 1:9 NIV).

“Peace I leave with you: my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid” (John 14:27 NIV).

For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind” (2 Timothy 1:7 NKJV).

“Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me” (Psalm 23:4 NIV).

If you are in the depths of fear right now don’t give up. Write these verses down and look up the many more that are in the Bible. Place them in areas where you look everyday. Say them out loud. Find one or two verses to cling to and read them over and over again when you are being gripped with fear. Pray the verses over yourself or a loved one who is struggling. Keep crying out to God. He hears your prayers and will walk with you, and carry you, and give you peace. I know it’s hard. You are not alone!

I would love to pray for you! Please leave your prayer request in the comments or you can send it to me through my contact page on my site menu.

Love you all,

Meghan

 

 

Faith, Jesus

Don’t Worry

800DDE77-2D0C-4F24-91A3-E1EB244575CEEvery morning I sit on my patio with my coffee and my Bible. I love spending time with God outside because I see Him in nature. He talks to me when I’m sitting on my couch, or driving in my car, or anywhere. But, I love being surrounded by His creation because many times that’s where I hear Him the loudest. I spend time with God every morning not because I’m super spiritual. Actually the opposite is true of me. I am weak and I am desperate for Him in my life.

As soon as I sit down I look at the blue sky and then the two large tallow trees in our backyard. They make a huge mess and wreak havoc on our pool, but they provide privacy, and shade. Those two trees also attract birds. All kinds of birds. Doves, Blue Jays, Swallows, Cardinals, Sparrows, Mockingbirds, and so many more. The trees are filled with very happy birds.

As I cry out to God to take away whatever I am going through, birds are flying back and forth between our trees and all the neighbors trees. In those moments the Holy Spirit reminds me of this beautiful truth from Jesus, “Look at the birds of the air. They do not sow or reap, or store away in barns and yet your Heavenly Father feeds them. Aren’t you much more valuable than they? Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?” (Matthew 6:26-27, NIV).

I came out of the womb worrying. I was good at it. And sometimes I still am. I like things planned, organized, and figured out. Life rarely works out so neatly. It’s messy. Complicated. Unpredictable. I am not very good with the unknown. God in His great love for me has slowly unraveled this worrying girl. He keeps having me step out into the unknown and He tells me, “Don’t worry my precious daughter,”. So I keep stepping out. Sometimes it’s easier for me than others. His overwhelming love for me is reassuring when I’m scared. He’s just that good, and I know He holds my future.

A few weeks ago as I was pouring my heart out to God, a Mockingbird perched on the wrought iron fence. It looked around for a moment, then hopped down to forage on our pepper plant. It spent a few minutes on the plant before it flew away. That bird was not worried about where it’s food was coming from or shelter or anything. I knew God was reminding me once again not to worry.

If God, in all His goodness, takes care of the birds, He can take care of whatever concerns you today, or tomorrow, or anytime. He is faithful to care for all of His creation, especially you!

Matthew 6:25-27 “That is why I tell you not to worry about everyday life-whether you have enough food and drink, or enough clothes to wear. Isn’t life more than food, and your body more than clothing? Look at the birds. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for your Heavenly Father feeds them. And aren’t you far more valuable to him than they are? Can all your worries add a single moment to your life?” (NLT).

Love you all,

Meghan