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Being Prepared - Not Scared

Being Prepared - Not Scared
Losing Fear's Grip Upon Our Lives

When he had come to us, he took Paul's belt, bound his own hands and feet, and said, "Thus says the Holy Spirit, So shall the Jews at Jerusalem bind the man who owns this belt, and deliver him into the hands of the Gentiles." Now when we heard these things, both we and those from that place pleaded with him not to go up to Jerusalem. Then Paul answered, "What do you mean by weeping and breaking my heart? For I am ready not only to be bound, but also to die at Jerusalem for the name of the Lord Jesus." So when he would not be persuaded, we ceased, saying, "The will of the Lord be done." And after those days we packed and went up to Jerusalem. Acts 21:11-15 (NKJV)

I received a text from my nephew Creed recently, he said, "Watch out for the rattle snakes, they're out!"  This had an impact upon my thinking for sure because I was getting ready to go out for a mountain bike ride in the local hills.  Creed knew this and he was just preparing me for what I might encounter.  I had a choice at this point, I could forget the mountain bike ride and instead go for a jog, or I could continue on, be prepared, and simply keep an eye out for any potential danger, and then deal with it knowing and believing in God's ultimate protection.

To some, this type of thinking may be foolish.  After all, why would anyone continue on a journey if they know there is a potential for danger?  Well we see Paul doing the same thing as recorded in chapter 21 of the Book of Acts.  Paul had just been warned by some other believers in the previous town he visited (Acts 21:1-6) and now he was being warned a second time.  Was he being negligent or foolish - not listening to God's warnings through others?  I don't think he was.  Let me explain.

As I have previously written, I believe Paul felt strongly he was to travel to Jerusalem and that it was in fact God's will for his life.  

Q:    So, why was Paul continually being warned of the imminent dangers awaiting him?

I believe it was God's way for Paul to be prepared, not scared.  God knew what laid ahead for Paul and He wanted to prepare him for these things.  

I believe the same thing applies to us today.  We can read God's Word and see the various things our Christian forefathers faced, or the newspaper and see what current Christians may be facing in other countries, and we can become fearful, finding ourselves not doing anything for God or allowing ourselves to be used.  I think God wants every one of us to know of the potential dangers so we can be prepared for what lies ahead.  When we are prepared for potential difficulties we will be better able to deal with them properly and we will not be taken off guard.  

Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God.  I will strengthen you, Yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand. Isaiah 41:10 (NKJV)

Hey Christian, life is full of potential danger and we are not to put the Lord our God to test.  That being said, we are not to stop living and walking in faith for fear of dying physically.   I want to encourage you to not be frightened of anything of this world.  Know with all assurance, God has a plan for our life (Jer. 29:11), and He will guide us through each situation according to His perfect plan (Ps. 23).  

STUDY QUESTION: According to Psalm 41:10, what comfort and assurance can we have in God?

PERSONAL INVENTORY: Have you found yourself being paralyzed in fear when facing potential dangers, dangers such as speaking to others, financial problems, relationship issues, etc.?

APPLICATION: Seek the Lord for His wisdom through His Word and in prayer.  Allow Him to guide you through every valley of potential death.  God wants to reveal Himself to us through our inability, because it is through our inability His strength is shown.

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for Your guidance, wisdom and leading of my life.  I am sorry for those times where I have taken my own route or have refused to walk in faith.  Show me the way today in all I do and say.  In Jesus' precious name, amen...

Be Blessed, Pastor Scott

Copyright ©2017 by Pastor Scott Wright.
Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Bible text from the New King James Version is not to be reproduced in copies or otherwise by any means except as permitted in writing by Thomas Nelson, Inc., Attn: Bible Rights and Permissions, P.O. Box 141000, Nashville, TN 37214-1000