God gives us signs if we just keep our senses open. I read the devotional on Sunday. I saw this rainbow on Tuesday. I got scary news yesterday. I found my mug today. Here’s what it means to me.
As promised, here is the a piece of the March 5th devotional in God Calling edited by A.J. Russell that started my training in a very human emotion called FEAR.
“…Fight fear as you would a plague. Turn it out of your lives and home. Fight it singly. Fight it together. Never inspire fear…No work that employs this enemy of Mine is work for Me. Banish it. There must be another and better way…Ask Me and I will show it you [sic].”
I’ve read this devotional before. How come I didn’t see this? Because, I ignored the subject for so many years that my heart wasn’t open enough to listen until Sunday.
I went to church with this on my heart. I can’t detail the homily, it was good but, my heart and mind were warring over this wisdom. The writing empowered me. I can fight fear. The writing hurt my soul when I recall the way I stirred fear in friends, family, and colleagues to push them to feel what I felt. How? What is the better way? All of these thoughts assailed me. I knew I was on to something big.
While waiting for the church to clear after mass, I was scanning through the bulletin; my eyes fell on a verse under the Church’s Men for Jesus announcement. Now I’m for Jesus but I’m not a Man. So I usually just skip these entries. I saw a verse I had not read before.
“Where one alone would be overcome, two will put up resistance; and a threefold cord is not quickly broken.” Ecclesiastes 4:12.
Was that the answer? When we are alone we can be overcome. I am easily overcome by fear. I have powerful spiritual friends and family. If I share my fear fight we can resist? Together we will not be broken. God is there in the midst of us. Our spirits are strengthened and his power is greater when we unite against evil (remember the title of the devotional is ‘Fear is Evil’).
On Tuesday I saw a rainbow in the midst of the storm clouds (See pic: it actually is the rainbow I saw! How cool are our snappy little smart phones?). In South Florida we see lots of rainbows and a lot of storms. But I rarely see them inside the storms. I saw this rainbow as a light inside my storm. I also saw one of my spiritual leaders for dinner that evening, My Mom. We were discussing my post, ‘Fear Not.’ Mom made the statement, “Don’t be afraid, Be wise.”
I love that. If she’d said it before I didn’t hear it. A lot of that going on! Rather than ignoring the things we should be aware of, ‘Be wise’ reminds me to make choices with God’s nudges. There is no fear in God’s choices for me.
On Wednesday my husband gave me the news he may need surgery on his carotid arteries. He had a heart attack a few years ago and strokes run in my family. Of course the fear set in. I could feel the knife in my back twist. It feel like a demon cackling as he twisted the blade. The other shoe dropped! One of your biggest fears is to lose your soul mate. Ha Ha Ha! Feel the fear.
Oh I felt it! Wow! I made myself sick with pain by morning. I woke with pain and inflammation in my joints. As I prayed through my morning, I reminded myself that He holds my heart. He holds my hand. His arm is around my shoulder. He will walk with me through the valley of the shadow of death. No matter what, I will not fall. Then today I found my mug:
It’s funny because I bought this mug for myself to remind me to be strong in faith. BUT I like my bigger mug for tea at work. This mug got shoved to the back of my cubicle cabinet. For some odd reason (Can you guess Who’s at work here?) I had an overwhelming craving for tea and absolutely had to have a smaller mug. Go figure! I picked it up as I shrugged to myself. As I filled it with hot water, I read the inscription (okay I was a little bored). Goodness! Another piece hit me. Another answer: Let your faith be bigger than your fear…hmmm. I placed my husband in God’s hands at that moment. We can actively fight our fear. The payoff is a closer walk with our Savior, Lord, the Prince of Peace.
Don’t be afraid my peeps. Be wise!