Q.I have to fight off fears daily. With the frightening reality of war, attacks on our homeland, financial meltdown, and chemical warfare, I find myself sleepless with worry and fear. One morning at 2:00 a.m., I found myself checking all the doors and windows. I know I should be trusting the Lord. But, frankly, things are becoming so frightening, it's hard to keep all my fears at bay. How do I get the abundant joy and peace that God promises during these times that we are living in? (E-mail from Ronnie)
I believe this precious one is voicing what multitudes of other sincere Christians are going through - they're struggling to keep fear out of their hearts. As we are hearing about all the terrible reports of what's happening in America and around the world, we are all striving to rest in God's promises.
The fact is, no matter how righteous we may be, and no matter how strong our faith is, all these frightful uncertainties coming to pass cannot help but affect our human emotions. It's all very scary. But, for the overcoming Christian whose sins are covered by the blood of Jesus, there is very good news. We have access to the Father and we can draw near to Him.
Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh; and having an high priest over the house of God; let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water. -Hebrews 10:19-22
This passage of Scripture contains an incredible promise. It says God's door is always open to us, giving us total access to the Father. A few verses later, we're warned that the day of the Lord is fast approaching: "Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching (Hebrews 10:25)." I believe God is telling us that as the time of Christ's return draws near, we must seek His face. We must go into our secret closet of prayer and get to know Him! We must also assemble ourselves with like believers and encourage one another in the Love of God.
This is not the time to let God's Truth (His Word) slip away from us. We need to stay awake and be alert. We have an open door into His Holy presence, so we need to go into Him with full assurance of faith, making our petitions known. Christ's blood has already made a way for us and nothing stands between us and the Father. We have every right to enter into the holy of holies, to receive all the help we need, so we can have that abundant life that Christ so desperately wants to give us!
When we allow "fear" to take hold of our emotions, we can choose to hang on to it or we can choose to renew our minds and have God's peace. In Nancy's book, Be Ye Transformed she goes into depth comparing the architecture of Solomon's Temple structure with the New Testament Believer. The priests of Solomon's Temple had a ritual for the cleansing and atoning for sin. There were five steps that they went through in the Inner Court when they dealt with sin. As New Testament believers, whenever "fear" has quenched God's Spirit and blocked His Life in our relationship with Him, we must get alone with God in our prayer closet and go through these steps
1.Recognize, acknowledge and experience the negative thoughts, emotions and desires that have just occurred. Don't vent these feelings and don't stuff them. Get alone with God and experience your emotions. Name how you are feeling. (I'm scared, I'm fearful of my future, I don't understand what's going on, Lord, etc) Ask Him to expose the real root cause of your ungodly thoughts and feelings.
2.Confess and repent of any negative thoughts and feelings that are "not of faith" or that you have held on to for awhile. (I confess that I've not trusted You and I want to know You more intimately, etc ) Choose to "turn around" from following what these things are telling you and choose instead to follow what God is saying. (Lord, I want to trust You. Show me how.) Unconditionally forgive others involved. God will then forgive your sins.
3.Give over to God all that He has shown you, not only the conscious negative thoughts and emotions, but also their root causes. He will then purge your sin and reconcile you to Himself.
4.Read God's Word. Be sure to replace the lies with Truth. He will then cleanse and heal your soul. (Read 11 Timothy 1: 7, "For God did not give us a Spirit of Fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.")
5. Worship Him.The true worshipers of God worship Him in spirit and in truth. These are the true "lovers of God" who bring the Love that He originally placed in their hearts (when they were born again), full circle back to Him as "love offerings" at the Incense Altar.
Remember, we serve a God who can cleanse us of all our fears. Learn to recognize His voice above all the worldly clamor. If you do this, your fear will be replaced by His Peace.
Thus, it doesn't matter if everything around us collapses, because this present life is not reality anyway. Our reality is eternal life in the presence of our blessed Lord. Hallelujah!
King's High Way Manager