27 Mar No Fear
Our world has changed seemingly overnight. Where before we had dinner and a movie, or a night out with friends to look forward to each evening, we now face weeks of intentional isolation. Schools have been cancelled across the country, with many students doing courses from home. Supplies have been snapped up by people in a panic. Fear seems to have taken hold of our country. But we are here to bring you a different message today. A message of power, love, and self-discipline granted to each of us by God!
“For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline.” 2 Timothy 1:7
Even when we face uncertainty, we don’t have to be afraid or timid. God tells us so! Not only that, there are no limits to this promise. Scripture clearly states we are not to live in fear of either the big issues or the small crisis we face.
In 2 Timothy, Paul is writing to his protégée Timothy. Paul was, at the time of this letter, about to be executed for preaching about Jesus, and Timothy was no doubt fearful of losing Paul, a man he considered a spiritual father. In those uncertain times, Timothy felt as if he had much to fear. Paul, in a spirit of loving truth, reminds Timothy that such a fear does not come from God, and it must at all times be resisted. Pay special attention to that, friend.
We are to resist fear.
Instead of fear, God gives us the Holy Spirit, and the Holy Spirit is a Spirit of Power!
The power of the Spirit has existed since the moment of Creation (Gen 1:2). It was “by the Spirit of God that Jesus cast out demons (Matt 12:28). The Spirit of God visited Mary and she conceived Jesus (Luke 1:35). The Spirit of God even came upon the timid disciples and transformed them into bold apostles. The Holy Spirit brings power, not fear.
The Holy Spirit is also a Spirit of Love.
1 John 4:13-16 tells us, “This is how we know that we live in him and he in us: He has given us of his Spirit. And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world. If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in them and they in God. And so we know and rely on the love God has for us.” We can RELY on the love God has for us!
Finally, the Holy Spirit is a Spirit of Self-Discipline.
The Holy Spirit gives power and love, but He also grants each of us self-discipline, allowing us to become more like Jesus. The Holy Spirit works in us to preserve us each day and to help us to live a life that is pleasing to God. We are called to live and work boldly and confidently, knowing that through Jesus, “we are more than conquerors through him who loved us” (Rom 8:37).
In the days ahead, be intentional in refusing to be afraid. Have faith and embrace the Spirit of Power, the Spirit of Love, and the Spirit of Self-Discipline! We want you to have NO FEAR!
As you make decisions for you and your loved ones, don’t do so with fear. Make your decisions knowing you hold the power, love, and self-discipline granted to you by the Holy Spirit.
In addition, we want to encourage you to do everything you can to help slow the progression of this pandemic in our community. Follow the recommendations of our government officials. Every action we take could be the difference in available care for someone who is ill.
As we face the weeks ahead, know that we will be here for you. And we encourage you to be there for others. We may have to stay home, but that doesn’t mean we will lose our sense of community. We will be stronger than ever in this time of need!
Call your friends and loved ones. Send them a quick message or email. Have a FaceTime call with your parents. Check in on elderly neighbors to make sure they have the resources they need and to let them know you are thinking of them.
If someone is feeling alone or needs assistance, let us know and we will step into the gap and help them in their time of need. We will do it knowing that within us dwells a Spirit of Power, Love, and Self-Discipline.
We want to leave you with this verse, a verse we are praying over each of you every day: “I remain confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.” (Psalm 27:13)
Pastor Rich and Dr. Robyn