For those of you doing the Esther Bible study by Beth Moore can I just say..."Don't ya just LOVE it?"
It has helped me in ways I can not express. It has made me think. It has made me dig deeper into the Scriptures. It has made me more aware of what God is doing around me.
A couple of weeks ago when we had our group Session Four several things "stuck out" to me during the lesson and have "stuck with" me ever since!
The first thing is Beth told us the most frequent command in the Bible is.....DON'T BE AFRAID! And you know, I was sort of glad to hear that because, being a fearful type person myself, I sometimes think I am all alone in my fears. But if that is the most frequent command in the Bible it must stand to reason that God KNEW that we as humans would tend to fear quite a lot! God is addressing many of my fears lately and helping with them. I do want to be more fear-less because I feel that is a measure of my love towards God. I John 4: 18 says, "There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love." I want to come to the place where my love for Christ is greater than my fear of "whatever". I have seen the truth of the statement "fear hath torment" in my own life. When I am overcome with fear I am certainly tormented. In my mind. And sometimes it spills over into my physical life and makes me sick. I don't want that!
Another thing in our Session Four teaching was a "fill-in-the-blank" illustration. Beth gave us this sentence:
And if ___________________________, then ________.
She told us to think of the very worst case scenario we could think about that we would be the most fearful of. All of us have those! There's something in our minds that we think would be the absolute worst thing that could ever possibly happen....whether it be to ourselves or to a loved one. I don't know about you but I could never even voice the words to say what mine would be. It would scare me so to hear it aloud! She told us to not actually fill in the blank but to fill it in mentally. And then she reminded us that whatever that horrible worry of ours is, that should it ever happen, God will be there. If _______________________, then GOD!
It reminded me of a story I heard Dave Roever tell about himself. He was horribly burned from a white phosphorus grenade that exploded near his head while he was serving in Vietnam. After he came home and had gotten out of the hospital (after many months) he went over to his Pastor father's church one afternoon. Dave said he got down on his knees at the altar and cried and prayed and told God that he hated all the scars and the pain that he had from his injuries. He told God that he wanted to be healed. He knew God had the power. Walking over to the back door he said something like this to God: "God, I'm fixin to walk out that back door and when I get outside I better be healed..or ELSE!" And he said it was like he heard God say, "Or else WHAT?" And immediately he bowed his head and responded..."Or else ...I'll just keep on serving you!" What a testimony! He is an evangelist on a global scale now. How God has used him! Possibly not in spite of his wounds, but because of them!
I admit that I have fears running through my head presently. I had a variety of tests done at the hospital last Monday-Wednesday. They are checking for several things. Waiting is my game right now. I may not hear any results until I go back to my doctor in about 3 weeks. My worst case scenario is that two of the tests come back with results that could be very life-changing for both me and my family. I want to be able to take that worst possible fear and fill in the blank "If _______________________, then GOD!" I don't want to be held captive by the fear Satan wants to feed to me daily. Beth Moore said something during the lesson that is so true..."We can be so afraid of death that we never really live!"
I know many of you who will read this are going through great trials of your own. I pray that you, too, will be able to trust God for the outcome.
Let's pray one for another!