20 December 2012

Are You Afraid? Should you be?

This is a good answer for us to consider when very bad things happen:

"Sandy Hook: America Needs To Take A Collective Breath"

I took it a step further in my response to the author. I tend to think a lot, and sometimes it spills out of my head on to someone's blog. I thought I would post it here too, since this is really where my own opinion resides, when it spills out of my head, that it.

(Maybe this is why women are told to cover their heads.)

Rhodes, I agree with you on this - not that it matters if I agree, but that we all agree with what God has taught us, of course - and I wonder a step further:

Should we not only NOT fear death or the loss of our personal stuff, or even our own health, but shouldn't we rather hope for the loss of some of these things? It is a touchy and difficult subject, I know, and I've struggled with it too. But as Christians, as Bible students, we read thoughts like 1 Thessalonians 4:13-14: "Brothers, we do not want you to be ignorant about those who fall asleep, or to grieve like the rest of men, who have no hope.  We believe that Jesus died and rose again and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him." 2 Corinthians 5:8: "We are confident, I say, and would prefer to be away from the body and at home with the Lord." And even Isaiah 57:1-2: "The righteous perish, and no one ponders it in his heart; devout men are taken away, and no one understands that the righteous are taken away to be spared from evil.  Those who walk uprightly enter into peace; they find rest as they lie in death."

We as humans want to defend ourselves because... why? Because we don't want to let go of our stuff, our health, our lives, our loved ones. But all that we have is the LORD's already. I have already given my children to Him, to His keeping, and my own life and stuff too. Why become a murderer in order to defend what is already in His keeping, whether it be me, my stuff, or my loved ones? Perhaps this is only the crazed spouting off of a so-termed "pacifist", but it seems to me to be better to be prepared to go and be with Him, knowing as well that my young children "will not come to me, but I will go to" them, and that, as we read in 2 Corinthians 4:17-18: ". . . our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.  So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal."

I think we mourn too deeply for ourselves, though for certain it is no sin to mourn (as even Jesus himself wept more than once, and deeply too). And I am afraid that we fear and panic and fight and defend because we do not trust God to take care of us, whether to protect us and defend us while on earth or to keep us safe forever in His perfect realm. Jesus told us that we "will have trouble," and though we do not seek it, we should be prepared for it, so that when bad things happen, we do not turn secular psychology and governments to help us "get through it", but will actually rely on Him who we gave our lives to, and His family, who have been comforted before so that we can comfort others too (I can't recall that verse)[see below]. Perhaps we didn't really relinquish our "rights" over our bodies, our families and our stuff to Him... and if not, maybe we should.

John 11:25-26: "Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies;  and whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?""

Romans 14:8: "If we live, we live to the Lord; and if we die, we die to the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord."

Philippians 2:20: "I have no one else like him, who takes a genuine interest in your welfare."

2 Corinthians 1:3-4: "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction so that we will be able to comfort those who are in any affliction with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God."

Matthew 19:29: "And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or fields for my sake will receive a hundred times as much and will inherit eternal life."

In my head, when I read these things, and when I contemplate them in the larger story of the good news that Jesus Christ brings us, I feel much more peaceful and confident - not in myself, but in that "Greater Power" whom I love. And I am not motivated to follow Him from fear of punishment or of longing for the pleasures of reward, but simply because I really don't have anyone else like him, who takes a genuine interest in my welfare.
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