'The LORD is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my GOD is my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.' (Psalm 18:2)
I'm sure you have noticed that most of the news lately, has been depressing.
People are worried, afraid, angry.
So much anger.
You can't even post a simple comment on your facebook/twitter/instagram page about trusting in God, without backlash. Without having to defend yourself. And of course you have to defend yourself carefully, because anger begets anger.
(' A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.' Pr 15:1)
Anger is like a wildfire. It just takes the tiniest spark, and then spreads, consuming everything in its path. Anger is contagious, just needing a few people to feed it, then it continues on, infecting, devouring, destroying more people.
Fear causes anger.
Fear reminds you that you are not in control of your life and that you are not safe. If you don't feel safe, you can't be at peace. If you aren't at peace, anger takes over. A state of entitlement. A state that you are right and the world is wrong. A state in which a heart hardens, and generosity is extinguished.
I had to explain to my son the rational behind peoples' fears. As to why it makes them do irrational things. Why we aren't supposed to be afraid.
If we are afraid, we can't function properly. We can't love properly. We can't worship GOD.
Here's the thing that a lot of us seem to forget:
The world is not going to get better. This is not a time of peace. We are not going to magically have someone show up and fix everything - stopping wars, hatred, injustice. Because if the 7 years of peace is here, then we missed something huge. And if we missed it, then we have some serious praying and kneeling to do.
As believers, we need to stand strong. We need to be fearless, we need to be patient, we need to show compassion and kindness, and we need to not be angry. And if we are angry, we need to change that anger quickly into positive actions.
We cannot be afraid. What good are we to GOD, and to others, if we are afraid?
Sometimes I'm afraid.
Sometimes it takes me touching the walls in my house as I get ready for bed, praying for protection from robbers/bears/rapists and earthquakes. It involves me waking up in the middle of the night, hearing a noise and reminding myself out loud that I am safe.
Sometimes it takes me waking up my husband in the middle of the night to pray for me as anxiety and terror kicks in.
Sometimes it takes me pinching myself so that I remember to think as God does; with compassion, with love, with gentleness.
'Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice.' (Eph 4:31)
My dear friends, we have some very ugly times ahead. Be brave. Be kind. Be gentle and offer kind words and open your hearts and homes. Look for the good in people. Look for the love. Be love. Be GOD's love.
Have your answer ready.
Jenn Kelly is an author who hasn't written squat in 6 months because farming takes up a lot of work. But she looks forward to writing again in the future. Maybe when her child leaves for University. Who knows?