– where Faith Begins –
Seldom do we find the barbs of life a comfort, however when we place our faith and trust in Jesus fear becomes fleeting as hope rises.
Note from Kip,
The difficult morning seems to be the ones where we rise out of bed to face uncertainty and unfulfilled expectations, the immovable object that seems to stand between us and a safe harbor, the expanse that has no bridge to cross.
This should be one, but it’s not.
I won’t go into detail, because I don’t wish to take our eyes off of the object of our talk today.
Fear has no foothold where faith is present. When we invest our faith and trust in God’s promises for us fear and doubt are abolished.
Trust in the Lord forever, because in the Lord, the Lord himself, is an everlasting rock!
Isaiah 26:4 (CSB)
Our enemy would have us focus on the dangers, the things that encroach from all sides, the deficiency of our resources, and our vulnerabilities.
Jesus wants us to focus on something different.
The passage I share below is often quoted, but unfortunately often times I see it quoted without including the verse that immediately follows it and is integral to the application of this focus.
Finally brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable — if there is any moral excellence and if there is anything praiseworthy — dwell on these things.
… then the promise …
Do what you have learned and received and heard from me, and seen in me, and the God of peace will be with you.
Philippians 4:8-9 (CSB)
That peace coming from faith in God’s capability and willingness to sustain us through every trial, the trust in His eager desire and ability to overcome all things before us and set us on solid ground.
Do not be startled or afraid. Have I not told you and declared it long ago? You are my witnesses! Is there any God but me?
There is no other Rock; I do not know any.
Isaiah 44:8 (CSB)
God’s words. Not someone interpreting the intent of the Creator, but God’s own words! Don’t let what you see before you scare you, neither be afraid of what you face. God says, “Have I not told you and declared it long ago? You are my witnesses! Is there any God but me?”
If God doesn’t know of any other Rock, there is none!
Victim of Fear
We fall victim to fear when we recognize that we have exhausted our resources. But this isn’t the response God desires for us. He simply doesn’t want us to be the victims of fear.
What God desires of us when facing the insurmountable is to react with unmitigated trust in Him.
He doesn’t call us to defeated lives. Instead, He calls us to victory, not just at the end of our days but every day.
I am able to do all things through him who strengthens me.
Philippians 4:13 (CSB)
Not because of our resources, but because of His abundant power and resource.
But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ!
1 Corinthians 15:57 (CSB)
In our own resources, we flounder and face failure at every turn. But God’s given us the victory through Jesus our Lord. In the very same manner that He delivered the enemies of Israel to them in battle when they were vastly outnumbered and outgunned.
There is literally nothing that stands in our way because Christ has won the victory for us.
Facing the Wall
We know the promise of God is to care for us in everything we need. How do we avail ourselves of this promise and claim victory in His name?
Of course just as we’ve been sharing trust comes at the outset. We must place our faith and trust in Him. Next, we need to make our supplication to Him.
“Truly I tell you, the one who believes in me will also do the works that I do. And he will do even greater works than these, because I am going to the Father. Whatever you ask in my name, I will do it so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask me anything in my name, I will do it.”
John 14:12-14 (CSB)
Next is surrender. I know this may seem a bit odd to you but, we must surrender our control of the situation over to Him. This isn’t to say that we don’t strive to accomplish that which is before us, but surrendering control of the situation takes the responsibility of the outcome off our shoulders and places it in the hands of the Lord.
While we are at it the surrender of the fear and doubt is important too. See, we can’t harbor these in the presence of faith and trust in Jesus. The two are not compatible with each other.
Remember this surrender actually took place when you gave your heart to Jesus. At that point, the old-self died and you were raised with Christ. So it is no longer you living but Christ Living in you that lives. This is then a recognition of the commitment that you made when you gave your life to Christ Jesus!
I have been crucified with Christ, and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.
Galatians 2:20 (CSB)
Then we can expect peace in the situation. We are putting our efforts toward it, yes, but our faith and trust are fully vested in Christ to accomplish that which He’s placed before us. Our reliance is on Him.
Don’t worry about anything, but in everything, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4:6-7 (CSB)
Doing so you’ll find that ‘Fear Ends where Faith Begins‘.