Do not fear. Love and trust.

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Last Sunday I visited EPIC Church while on a business trip in San Francisco.  Here are some raw notes from the sermon as they apply to me. NOTE: These aren’t necessarily things the pastor said, these are the thoughts, questions, insights which occurred to me as a result of the message. 

Title: Never Go Back

What is present in my life that could hijack God’s vision for my life?

Being at a transition point, that really stuck with me. First question I’m wrestling with is simply, “Father, what is your will?” The second question then, I guess, is “What am I holding on to that would hinder your desires for my direction?”

We are not to be slaves to fear any longer. But why is that true and what does that look like?

How often does the bible say some variation of “Do Not Fear”? (Depending on the translation, somewhere between 30 and 130 times.)

“Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9b ESV

Where in my life am I playing it too safe in order to minimize the fear in my life?

Hmmm…As I get older I have a greater tendency toward safety and comfort.

“Just as I was with Moses, so I will be with you. I will not leave you or forsake you.” Joshua 1:5b ESV

  • God dos not minimize what Joshua will face.
  • God does not try to increase Joshua’s self confidence.
  • God seeks to increase Joshua’s God confidence.

We are not fearful because the thing is so strong but because we’ve forgotten that god is with us and for us.

How can we be sure God is with us and for us? What evidence do we have of that?

“He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?” Romans 8:32 ESV

God has already proven himself.

I was put in mind of Matthew 16:4 where Jesus said, “An evil and adulterous generation seeks for a sign…”

The second verse of the song “Blessings” by Laura Story also popped into my head:

We pray for wisdom, Your voice to hear
We cry in anger when we cannot feel You near
We doubt your goodness, we doubt your love
As if every promise from Your word is not enough
And all the while, You hear each desperate plea
And long that we’d have faith to believe

Truth be told, I’ve done more than my fair share of crying in anger and doubting.

“There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love.” 1 John 4:18 ESV

I trust little because I love little.

“This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.” Joshua 1:8 ESV

Father turn my heart to you. You have told me, broadly, what I need to do as you told Abram to go to a place you would show him later on. Turn my heart away from my sin and supposed self sufficiency and bring me to a place of trusting you for daily bread. May my love for you direct me to meditate on your Word day and night and increase my love for you ever more and more. It is by your good pleasure and for your glory I live, move, and have my very being. Amen.

 

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