Fear Not Threats (#24)

I Samuel 22:23     Abide thou with me,  fear not:  for he that seeketh my life seeketh thy life:  but with me thou shalt be in safeguard.  (KJV)

David, God’s anointed/appointed king, is running for his life from Saul, the current king over Israel.  Saul is now demented with jealousy, bitterness, and ego, and he has slain God’s priests, all their families, and livestock save one, Abiathar (name means “my father excels”).  Abiathar finds David and tells him of all that has taken place.

David, servant of God and man after God’s own heart, takes full responsibility for this atrocity and offers asylum to this renegade son of the high priest, Ahimelech.

As servants of the living God are we more concerned with relationship than ego?  Do we shelter those who are under attack?  Are we willing to lay down our lives for another?  “No greater love hath no man than this, to lay down his life for his friend.”  (John 15:13)  Love is what sets apart servants of God.

We can hear these very words from the heart of Jesus:  “He that sought my life, seeks yours, but stay with me and I promise you will be safe–trust me” (Revelation 2:10). In the coming days, we as Christians will need to remember this fact: Followers of Christ will be persecuted  (Matthew 5:11, Matthew 24:9, and II Timothy 3:12).  It is a sign we truly are followers of Christ.  In Revelation 2:10, the apostle John writes as instructed by the Holy Spirit:  Do not be afraid of what you are about to suffer. I tell you, the devil will put some of you in prison to test you, and you will suffer persecution for ten days. Be faithful, even to the point of death, and I will give you life as your victor’s crown.  Many through the centuries have given their lives because they were unwilling to deny Christ.  Now it is happening again; making the headline news every night.  For example, Pastor Saeed has been imprisoned three years in Iran, tortured, unable to watch his children grow, leaving his wife to fight for his freedom all because he will not recant his faith in Christ and return to his Muslim heritage.  One day very soon, writings such as this may lead to the demise of the writer.  I wonder…will I stand?  Will I shelter another who may be in danger?  These are hard questions.  We may not know the answer until we are truly faced with the possibility.  Some Oregon teens were recently put to the test.

Father, give us courage to stand in these uncertain and perilous days. Give us discernment.  Open your Word to our understanding that we may know truth.  Grant us your peace that surpasses understanding amid threats both perceived and real.

We ask this in the name of Jesus, our Savior and Lord.  Amen

(Because He Lives)

Treading in the twilight,

Links for further reading:

Article on Pastor Saeed (an American citizen)
Oregon Community College shooting

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About Yvonne Jones

I am at heart, a LIFEguard: "big" sister, mama, grandmother, aunt, friend, swimming coach, lifeguard trainer, and registered nurse. I am in the business of alleviating fear through education and lots of hand holding. As a swimming instructor, I have taught people of all ages to overcome fear of the water and I marvel as fear gives way to fearlessness, as panic turns to pure joy, as tears dissolve into giggles of glee, and pennies retrieved from the bottom of the abyss become trophies. As a nurse, I have been privileged to walk up to Heaven's gate as patients and family are welcomed home, witnessed the miracle of birth, helped mend broken hearts, and cared for the elderly as they wait. Scriptures number one admonition is "fear not." Question is HOW??? The Word becomes our swimming instructor and can help us learn to "tread water til Jesus comes." Something my students often thought I was going to make them do! So welcome to my pool! Jump in the cool water. Let it refresh your soul and feel the unseen hands of the Master Lifeguard lift you up and out of the deep water. Who knows, you just might even walk on water!

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