Freedom in Fellowship One to One: Article 2
By Brenda Daniels. Material taken from Living Without Worry by Timothy Lane.
Hullo dear Freedom in Fellowship One-to-One ladies and happy 2017 to you!
Perhaps at the start of this new year you are feeling fresh, full of energy and looking forward to the year ahead. Or perhaps you feel anxious about what 2017 could hold for you.
Worrying about the future is often due to its uncertain nature. So, for instance, you may be concerned about having enough to eat or drink. Or being capable enough to find a job. Perhaps you worry about your future health, or if you’ll be lonely. Or maybe you find yourself asking a variety of “What if….” questions. When these uncertainties mount up in our minds we can become anxious, lose our appetites (or overeat), feel sad, paranoid or even depressed.
So how, as Christians, do we begin to deal with this future worry? Well, we need a sense of perspective. Jesus gives us this when he tells us about hell in Luke 12. “I tell you my friends,” begins verse 4, “do not be afraid of those who kill the body and after that can do no more. But I will show you whom you should fear. Fear him, who, after your body has been killed, has authority to throw you into hell.” Hell is a final reality, one our just God will use to ultimately judge sin. It is God we should ultimately fear.
At the same time as Jesus speaks about hell in Luke 12, though, he also provides a solution to this problem: forgiveness through the Father’s grace. In Luke 12:8 Jesus says: “I tell you, whoever publicly acknowledges me before others, the Son of Man will also acknowledge before the angels of God.” Jesus’ explicit purpose for coming to Earth, you see, was to deal with the fearful reality of God’s judgment of sin and the awful nature of hell. He tells us what to worry about, yes, but then (when we believe in him) he takes away our need to worry and gives us the wonderful promise of eternal fellowship with him in heaven.
So, in the ups and downs of the weeks to come, the stresses and strains of your uncertain future, let the certainty of your eternal future be what you cling to. May God grant you grace to embrace the truth that, if you belong to Jesus, hell has no power over you.
Share some future worries you may have with your Freedom in Fellowship partner and pray together through Psalm 27:4-5:
One thing I ask from the Lord,
This only do I seek:
That I may dwell in the house of the Lord
All the days of my life,
To gaze on the beauty of the Lord
And to seek him in his temple.
For in the day of trouble
He will will keep me safe in his dwelling;
He will hide me in the shelter of his sacred tent
And set me high upon a rock.