Sunday, July 25, 2021

Sunday Afternoon Tea - Be Strong and of Good Courage

The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters. He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake.  

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me. Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.  

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.  Psalm 23 KJV

We had a storm with a lot of lightening go through last night just after I had gone to bed.  Since our house was hit by lightening before, I tend to get restless in electrical storms so I got out of bed and turned on our local TV station to see if there were any warnings.  

As I expected, the weekend meteorologist broke in to the regular programming with a weather alert so I was able to see where the warnings were and that it would not be long before the worst of the storm had passed.

As I sat on the sofa in the dark, with only the light from the television screen flickering, I was thinking of today's blog post and what I had planned to share.  However, just as I turned the television off, I heard that Still Small Voice asking me to be still and listen.

The words I heard were that I was to write today what He wanted you to read and not what I had planned.  I could sense intense emotions that many of us are feeling... of uncertainty, fear, and dread.  Then, I heard that Still Small Voice say that I was to write about not being afraid when it seems like the world is falling apart around us.  

I can't recall being stopped like that in the darkness and having God speak so clearly, at least for a very long time.  Especially about words I am to say or write to anyone else. I take very seriously the words, "God told me" and I do not throw them around lightly.  But... God told me.

I felt His overwhelming love for you and me and all of us, His concern for our peace and feelings of well being in the coming weeks and months.  He knows the images we see on the news, those images that take us to fires and floods, drought and famine, viruses and plagues, the suffering of mothers and children, political turmoil, wars and rumors of wars, those images that take our peace away.

He wants us to remember that we were born for such a time as this and by placing us here in this period of history, He has given us everything we need to get through all of the turmoil of this age.  He is our provider. When I look back over the decades, I can see that I didn't get everything I thought I wanted but He always provided what I needed.  Sometimes the answer to prayer came "whistling Dixie"... but it came on His time.

Jesus has already proven how much He loves us by leaving Heaven, taking on the flesh of a human, and dying on the cross to become our sacrificial Lamb to break Adam's curse.  All He asks of you and me is to believe.  Believe He is the only begotten Son of God.  That He is our Redeemer.  That He is preparing a place for us and He is returning, this time not as a Lamb but as a Lion.

Yes, my friends... Aslan is on the move.  Can't you just feel it?  Can't you look around and sense that great spiritual battle between God's warrior angels and those that rejected their glory?  Sometimes, it is almost as if one can hear the clanging of swords as the battle rages.

The battle for this planet.  The battle for humanity.  The battle for who will rule and reign forever and ever.  While the spiritual battle is taking place, we see here on earth the battle on the planet and it scares the heck out of us.  At least it does me sometimes when I watch news videos.

But as Aslan said, "Have courage, dear one".  That is what the Still Small Voice whispered in my spirit last night.  Tell them to have courage.  Tell them that they can be brave, no matter what their age or their health or their financial condition or whatever is worrying them at the moment.

He wants us to know that while we are tempted to fear, we don't have to let it settle over us.  The Bible tells us that He has not given us the spirit of fear and if God has not given it to us, then guess who has?

Be strong and of good courage, my friend.  The battle rages but we already know who wins.  It is the Creator and not the created one who led a third of his kind to revolt against the God of love.  Just think, those third of the angels in Heaven... whom the enemy convinced to rebel against their Creator... lived in a perfect environment.  Far more glorious I believe than Eden.  Something so amazing, it is beyond our ability to comprehend what it looks like.

Yet, the enemy is so clever and so good at lying that he could deceive a third of the angels to follow him.  For just as he told Eve... they thought there was something better and stronger and smarter.  

For eons, bullies have been convincing others that good people finish last.  That those who show love are weak.  That kindness is a reflection of naivety.   I mean, look at the pictures of Jesus on the cross!  Wasn't He weak?  Did He really raise from the dead?  I mean, really... how can you believe such a thing and be an educated person?

Aslan is on the move and someday, He will have the final victory!  Can't you hear His roar in the distance?  Over the horizon?  Are Heaven's gates already opening?  Is the Marriage Supper of the Lamb in the oven?  Can't you just about smell the aromas coming from Heavenly kitchens?

How can I be afraid when all of this is happening?  When He has already paid the price?  What can the enemy do when we have Heaven and the New Earth and the promise of a crown?  We cannot let the deceiver cause us to be afraid.  For God has not given us the spirit of fear but of power, and love and a sound mind... and thrown in is everlasting redemption on top of all that.

So, my friends.  This is what He told me to share in the dark as a storm raged outside my window.  Fear not even when you feel fearful.  Trust Him even when you are scared.  Hold on tight as the winds of the age are raging around us.  He has the hairs of your head numbered and holds you in the palm of His hand.  He isn't going to leave you now.

Image:  Cotswolds Evening by Robert Duncan

17 comments:

Anonymous said...

Thank you for listening to His voice and sharing this column. I am pretty sure He had you write this for me! It just happens that this is my favorite psalm.

Valerie said...

Thank you so much for sharing His words and encouragement to us. I read and enjoy all your posts, but particularly cherish your Sunday messages, as this one, that build up my spiritual pantry!

Jenny said...

Have you watched To Tell the Truth on Youtube? It's put out by the ACL(Australian Christian Lobby). He did a post of fear this past week that is so very good.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ps16tY33mbs

I've watched it more than once because his words are so very encouraging to me.

Mary said...

Thank You, LORD, and thank you, Brenda. That is excellent and true.
Mary in San Diego

Vee said...

No, He's not letting go of us. This post is a blessed encouragement. Sometimes life feels like one desperation after the next. He is just getting me ready. "God has never failed me; But He has scared me half to death a number of times." I thought that was just an expression, but it is also a book.

A blessed week to you...

1Thess411gal said...

This is beautiful and so encouraging, Brenda. Thank you for following the prompting of the Spirit in what you wrote today. On the note of "for such a time as this," my best friend/prayer partner remark that all the time. God brought us together as friends way back in 1993. Originally, we became friends so our kids could play together and we could chat while they did. We began praying together in 1995, and we still do so today (every Friday, over the phone, as we no longer live near one another). We often remark that God brought us together all those years ago "for such a time as this," so that we could bear one another's burdens as we trust the Lord with our adult children and grandchildren in this wicked culture we now live in.

Blessings,
Patti @ Leaving a Legacy

Amanda said...

Thank you so much for this. I really needed to hear it!

Nana D said...

Thank you for your words of encouragement. They are much needed these days.

Unknown said...

Thank you, Brenda, for this post. I very much needed these words today. Shirley near Seattle

Deanna Rabe said...

I believe this! I have felt that He is on the move. I have sensed the spiritual battle. I try to remember everyday to put on the full armor of God and then having done that, to stand. Stand for truth and justice, true justice. Stand for Him, be a city on a hill. Shining his light in the darkness.

Thanks for sharing!

Ann said...

Wonderful! So glad you heard that "still small voice". We are so blessed to know the Father and know how much He cares for us. I have some friends who will be glad to see these words as well. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Brenda! I feel the anointing of the Lord on this message. Peace to you!
Lydia

Lisa said...

Thank You!

Anonymous said...

This was so good! So thankful you heard God speak to you and followed through! This went along with my devotions too! I keep hearing we are here for “such a time as this”! Can’t help but wonder what could be coming around the bend! But your encouraging word from God is comforting! Thank-you for sharing! God Bless!!
Laura C.(WA)

Marla said...

Amen!

gail said...

Beautiful and timely words, Brenda. Thank you for bringing God’s word to us, and reminding us Who is in control.
Blessings Gail.

Keri said...

Thank you, Brenda, for sharing these comforting *and* fortifying words. I'm so glad that you were awake in the darkness to hear from the Lord for us.