First United Methodist Church, Lewistown, PA 17044  ~  717-248-4618   ~  fumc200@outlook.com

Afraid of my own shadow.

November 30, 2016

    When I was little, the MGM lion roaring at the beginning and ending of a TV show absolutely terrified me. The Abominable Snowman in Rudolph the Rednose Reindeer did the same thing. I don't know why these two things held such sway over my young mind. Today, as an adult, I look back and see the fallacy of those fears but in that day, the fear was real.

     What scares you? I'm sure there are a few things that raise your BP and give you cause for sweaty palms. We don't have to be fearful. In fact, God instructs us time after time to fear not. A quick search of my Bible software produced 84 scriptures instructing us to:

*fear not. (1)

*do not be afraid. (15)

*do not fear. (68)

The one text that spoke volumes to me today was this one from Isaiah 43.

        "But now, this is what the LORD says—he who created you, O Jacob, he who formed you, O Israel: “Fear

        not, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine. When you pass through the

        waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you

        walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze. For I am the LORD, your

        God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior; I give Egypt for your ransom, Cush and Seba in your stead."

        (Isaiah 43:1-3, NIV)

The prophet encouraged the nation of Israel to never allow fear to overcome their faith. When all the world was falling apart around Israel, God assured them He would be there. God was in the:

*Waters. (v. 2)

*Fire. (v. 2)

Those horrible places where life can be snatched away in the blink of an eye, God promised to be there. 

I offer to you the peace of Christ. When you are treading water and in danger of sinking below the surface, take heart because your God is there. When you are forced into the flames of trial in your life, take heart because your God is with you.

Fear is the robber of our faith and can often paralyze us into a place that diminishes our life to a pittance of what God desires. Take heart and don't let the lions and abominable snowmen to scare the begeebers out of you.

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