Covid-19 restrictions, isolation, work loss, sickness, depression, anxiety attacks, frustration, financial needs and even the death of a loved one are but a few of the many challenges facing us today.
Admittedly we are all wired differently; I’m generally a glass half full person. A big part of that is my natural makeup, but it is not the only reason for my hope or ability to cope. The last few months, I’ve faced my fair share of obstacles, darkness has threatened to overcome my mind at times, and my natural makeup has never been enough to carry me through.
Fear vs Faith
The devil wants to use circumstance to consume our minds so that we focus entirely on ‘the problem’ and not on God’s Word as ‘my provision’. His strategy is to fill our minds with fear. Fear always cancels faith, and this is why time and again, before God did a miracle in the Old Testament, or when Jesus healed the sick or raised the dead in the New Testament, He’d command them firstly to “fear not”.
For example, in Luke 8:50 (NKJV), Jesus tells a father whose daughter has died, “Fear not, only believe, and she will be made well”, and Jesus restored her to life. We see this mentioned over 300 times in Scripture, where men and women are told not to fear but only to have faith in God and believe.
Fear is the exact opposite of faith.
Fear is the exact opposite of faith. The reason satan wants us to be filled with fear is to get us to think wrong so that we believe wrong so that we start to speak wrong (because he knows that as a man thinks, so is he in his heart, and from his heart, a man speaks – Proverbs 23:7 and Luke 6:45). He knows that the words we speak can either bring us down or help to spur us on.
Renewing Our Minds with God’s Word
Everything starts with our thinking; this is why Paul warned the church in Corinth; “I am afraid that just as Eve was deceived by the serpent’s cunning, your minds may somehow be led astray” – 2 Corinthians 11:3 (NKJV). Paul knew this evil strategy of Satan in getting our minds first.
Friends, you who are so loved by God our Father, we must renew our minds daily with God’s Word and remind ourselves that our God is never unaware of our circumstances and needs. He knows when we are desperate, possibly at the point of emotional breakdown and often close to tears or collapse. His Word has the power to secure our minds and to fill our hearts with faith once again.
His Word has the power to secure our minds and to fill our hearts with faith once again.
As we cling to our God and confess His Word over our lives and needs, faith and hope will return to strengthen our minds once again (Romans 10:17). It may not take just a day or three, or even a month, but God’s Word will, in time, produce faith in you that will change your thinking for good.
The Role of Local Church
We need to get alone with Jesus and into His Word daily. However, this alone is also not enough; it is vital for us all to belong to a local church with New Testament values. A home and family where we can share our feelings and practical needs in our midweek home – groups (communities) – whether online or in person, and receive prayer, loving support and practical assistance during our time of need. This is a key value amongst all our Four12 partnering churches. Folks, we need each other more today than ever.
Lastly, I know that many folks take some form of prescribed medication to assist them emotionally and psychologically. Please, continue to allow medical science to balance what your body lacks chemically, and do not stop taking what has been prescribed for you; keep walking out your journey with your doctors and leaders.
It is never God’s will for us to walk alone.
Along with other aids, there remains a great need for His Word. It is in His Word that He tells us of His commitment to us, His promises to sustain us and His grace that will enable us to live as overcomers. Folks, never doubt the faithfulness of our God, who has promised never to leave us at any point in time. Call out to Him today, start reading His Word daily, reach out to your community and leaders. It is never God’s will for us to walk alone.