Take Courage!

Saturday, January 04, 2014, 5:36 a.m. – the Lord Jesus woke me with the song “Why Are You Afraid?” playing in my mind. Speak, Lord, for your servant is listening. I read Matthew 14:22-33 (NIV):

Immediately Jesus made the disciples get into the boat and go on ahead of him to the other side, while he dismissed the crowd. After he had dismissed them, he went up on a mountainside by himself to pray. Later that night, he was there alone, and the boat was already a considerable distance from land, buffeted by the waves because the wind was against it.

Shortly before dawn Jesus went out to them, walking on the lake. When the disciples saw him walking on the lake, they were terrified. “It’s a ghost,” they said, and cried out in fear.

But Jesus immediately said to them: “Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.”

“Lord, if it’s you,” Peter replied, “tell me to come to you on the water.”

“Come,” he said.

Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, “Lord, save me!”

Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. “You of little faith,” he said, “why did you doubt?”

And when they climbed into the boat, the wind died down. Then those who were in the boat worshiped him, saying, “Truly you are the Son of God.”

Buffeted By Waves

John the Baptist had just been beheaded by the king, in response to a promise the king had made to his wife’s daughter. Upon hearing the news of John’s death, Jesus withdrew by boat to a private place. When Jesus reached land, he was moved to compassion toward the crowd of people who had followed him there. He healed their sick, and he miraculously fed their bellies. Afterwards, he sent his disciples on ahead of him by boat, he dismissed the crowd of people, and he went up on a mountainside to pray.

Later on that night, the boat on which the disciples had been sent ahead of Jesus was being pounded by the waves because the wind was against it. In the case of this story, the winds and waves were literal, and they may be for us, too, as many right now are suffering the ill effects of severe weather storms of great magnitude, many of which I believe are man-made. The new winter storm in the U.S. was named “Ion,” which reportedly will bring sub-freezing temperatures and a cyclone-like storm. This follows on the tail of winter storm Hercules. An ion, is “an atom or molecule in which the total number of electrons is not equal to the total number of protons, giving the atom a net positive or negative electrical charge.” - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ion. I admit I don’t understand ion. Yet, from what I read, they are used in weather manipulation. So, I suspect this is another man-made storm.

Yet, there are other types of storms which hit our lives, too. Some of these man-made storms, for instance, are given specific names which I believe tell a story beyond just the storm itself, and speak of a political movement sweeping across the globe like a storm, which is taking the nations of this world by storm, and that is this New World Order Beast which is conquering one nation at a time, and is persecuting and killing Christ’s true servants and messengers, too. And, all this is leading up to this rule of the beast spoken about in the book of Revelation, and in other books of the Bible, too. Many people throughout the world are suffering the ill effects of this “storm,” too, as many have been uprooted, have lost their homes, are living in tents or shelters or in U.N. camps, and have lost the lives of loved ones, and have had their governments taken over, etc.

And, then there are those who are facing marital difficulties, trouble with their children, ill health, death of loved ones, financial woes, hardship, disease, rejection, persecution, abandonment, betrayal, etc. There are many types of “storms” which come into our lives and which beat against us to try to wear us down, to try to get us disheartened and discouraged, or are for the purpose to strengthen us and to draw us closer to God or to bring us back to God because we have strayed away from our pure devotion to our Lord.

Don’t Be Afraid

No matter what form our present storm may be in, what is universally true is that God is absolutely in control of all things and is over all things, and nothing can come into our lives unless God has allowed it and he has allowed it for a purpose, and he intends to get the glory through it. Nothing takes God by surprise. And, he is certainly not incapable of stopping any of these storms if he wants to, as well, for he remains all powerful. So whatever storm is beating you down and is pounding against you, perhaps as a negative energy force for the sole purpose to try to get you to give up or to give in, God has it handled and he is right there in the midst of it all, and he will see us through it if we put our trust in him. That doesn’t mean he will rescue us from it, though he may, and it does not mean he will calm the actual storm, though he might do that, too, but what he does promise is peace within, assurance of his care and his presence, and that he will give us the strength, courage, and determination to remain strong in our faith despite the waves.

So, we don’t have to be afraid of whatever may come our way, no matter how severe or how difficult it may be, for if we put our trust in Jesus Christ, he will give us all we need to make it through, and he will give us the wisdom and encouragement we need, as well, to know what to do and what to say when those times come, and they will come. We get afraid when we get our eyes off of Jesus Christ and we focus on our winds and waves, i.e. on the difficult circumstances of our lives. Yet, it is during those times of difficulty when we often can see God work in our lives in miraculous ways. We just have to believe, and not doubt.

Why Are You Afraid? / An Original Work / December 5, 2013

Based off Various Scriptures

Do not be afraid.
Your Lord is always by your side.
Serve the Lord in righteousness
Before Him all your days.
Those who hate the light
Will not come to the Lord.
They fear their deeds
Might be noticed.
So, they hate the light,
And they embrace the night.

Do not be afraid,
Although your enemy attacks.
Dare to share your testimony
Of God’s saving grace.
Do not fear their threats,
But honor Christ, your Lord.
Be prepared to give an answer
For the hope you have,
With gentleness; respect.

Why are you afraid?
For all that’s hidden will be shown.
What I tell you, speak in daylight.
Let the truth be known.
Do not be afraid
Of those who’ll take your life.
Fear the Lord with understanding.
Trust Him with your life,
And give not up to strife.

Do not be afraid.
Take courage, it is I, your Lord.
Bow before Me; now adore Me.
Oh, why do you doubt?
Listen to the Lord.
Get up, and bear His name!
Run and tell the world He loves them.
Jesus came to save.
Give Him your all today.