Tuesday, June 5, 2018

What To Do When You Are Tempted To Hide In A Cave When Trouble Comes



He Himself has said….So we may boldly say… —Hebrews 13:5-6

{CHAMBERS} “My assurance is to be built upon God’s assurance to me. God says, “I will never leave you,” so that then I “may boldly say, ‘The Lord is my helper; I will not fear’ ” (Hebrews 13:5-6). In other words, I will not be obsessed with apprehension. This does not mean that I will not be tempted to fear, but I will remember God’s words of assurance. […] The faith of many people begins to falter when apprehensions enter their thinking, and they forget the meaning of God’s assurance— they forget to take a deep spiritual breath. The only way to remove the fear from our lives is to listen to God’s assurance to us.  What are you fearing? Whatever it may be, you are not a coward about it— you are determined to face it, yet you still have a feeling of fear. When it seems that there is nothing and no one to help you, say to yourself, “But ‘The Lord is my helper’ this very moment, even in my present circumstance.” Are you learning to listen to God before you speak, or are you saying things and then trying to make God’s Word fit what you have said? Take hold of the Father’s assurance, and then say with strong courage, “I will not fear.” It does not matter what evil or wrong may be in our way, because “He Himself has said, ‘I will never leave you….’ ” Human frailty is another thing that gets between God’s words of assurance and our own words and thoughts. When we realize how feeble we are in facing difficulties, the difficulties become like giants, we become like grasshoppers, and God seems to be nonexistent. But remember God’s assurance to us— “I will never…forsake you.””

{ELGIN} Courage is not the absence of fear, but action in the face of fear.  (Joshua 1:8-9) “Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful. Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”  That is what the Lord told Joshua as Joshua was called to leadership and mighty acts that could only be accomplished by the power of God as Joshua walked in obedience to the Word of God by faith in God.  It’s one thing to read or hear about others facing lions .. it’s quite another to feel the lion’s breath on your face.  That is how it often is when we read about the success stories of others, or hear testimonies.  But when we face challenges in our own lives, we get weak in the knees, we want to find a place to run.  That is how it was for Elijah (1 Kings 19:8-10) “So he got up and ate and drank. Strengthened by that food, he traveled forty days and forty nights until he reached Horeb, the mountain of God. There he went into a cave and spent the night. The Lord Appears to Elijah And the word of the Lord came to him: “What are you doing here, Elijah?” He replied, “I have been very zealous for the Lord God Almighty. The Israelites have rejected your covenant, torn down your altars, and put your prophets to death with the sword. I am the only one left, and now they are trying to kill me too.”” 

Elijah had just experience a great spiritual victory and had seen God show up as Elijah faced a people hostile to him and God.  Now he was hiding in a cave … fearful for his life.  Some peoples faith goes on and off like a light switch.  One minute they stand in the bright light of the glory of God and “click”, the next they are in the dark pit of despair.  (1 Kings 19:14,18) “He [Elijah] replied, “I have been very zealous for the Lord God Almighty. The Israelites have rejected your covenant, torn down your altars, and put your prophets to death with the sword. I am the only one left, and now they are trying to kill me too.” [God said] “Yet I reserve seven thousand in Israel—all whose knees have not bowed down to Baal.”  

Listen – Elijah felt alone – but He was not alone – Elijah chose to be alone.  That is a mistake that many Christians make.  They need to draw close to other Christians, yet, instead they choose to hide in a cave.  They do exactly the opposite of what they should do.  Their fear captivates them.  They even fear other Christians.  Maybe you are struggling with the issues of life.  You are hiding from God and avoiding other Christians .. exactly the opposite of what you should be doing.  You are in darkness and dominated by the old nature.  Or perhaps you know someone who is.  I tell people that it is hard to hug a porcupine … you are going to get stuck by the quills … but you need to hug them anyway.  Think about it and reach out to someone.

1 comment:

Darrell said...

“Human frailty is another thing that gets between God’s words of assurance and our own words and thoughts. When we realize how feeble we are in facing difficulties, the difficulties become like giants, we become like grasshoppers, and God seems to be nonexistent. But remember God’s assurance to us—‘I will never...forsake you.’ Have we learned to sing after hearing God’s keynote? Are we continually filled with enough courage to say, ‘The Lord is my helper,’ or are we yielding to fear?” – Chambers

“...yet not I, but Christ liveth in me...(Galatians 2:20)” Saint and sinner alike needs Jesus—every moment of every minute, this is true. As followers of Christ, our frailty comes as we blink, and lose sight of the power of the Cross and Resurrection of Jesus in us. There is no frailty in Jesus. What He has done for us is powerfully and fully sufficient (and then some). Our frailty comes as we break our focus upon Him. Our gaze must be as that of a lion stilly poised in the savanna grasses with eyes hungrily fixed on “the prize.” We gain confidence and spiritual strength by grabbing hold, through obedience, to His assurances to us. Fearful and dreadful things will most definitely come our way, but do not confuse the emotions that they momentarily bring with a pattern of response that is, less than FAITH in the One Who has said, “...greater is he that is in you, than he that is in this world...(I John 4:4).”