Fearless Women of God

By Dottie Ryan

See now that I, even I, am he, and there is no god beside me; I kill and I make alive; I wound and I heal; and there is none that can deliver out of my hand. (Deuteronomy 32:39)

We know from last week that Jesus sent out his disciples – He made them go – He, as Laurie suggested, compelled them to go, seemingly alone, in the midst of “The Wind and The Waves”.  Being among the storm where the wind was against them, where they were being beaten by the waves – appearing to be getting nowhere – fear arose.  Yet our Lord was there, right in the midst of their fears to rescue them when they had taken their eyes off Him and looked, instead, at their circumstances.  He immediately reached out His hand to save them – and the wind ceased. Peace and calmness fell upon the circumstances when Jesus came upon the scene.  His very presence commanded obedience from the storm.   As disciples, we can surely relate as we have likely come to the realization that we, too, are sent out just as they were. Yet He is right here for us in our storm when it seems that there is no way out.  And isn’t that a sweet confidence to have? To know that He is always faithful to save? Or do we not know that yet?

This week’s study brings us to the question: “Lord, are You in the storm”?  We have been led to study the Sovereignty of God.  Through that, we have been shown that nothing can happen that He hasn’t allowed.  And for some of us, we might find comfort in that – to know that the Lord is in control and nothing can thwart His plans. We rest in that Truth.  For others of us, we may be challenged to see that as a good thing, especially if we find ourselves in the midst of some very dark and troubling times.  In looking at the scriptures of the Old Testament, we might even begin to question how that can be comforting, particularly as we read Lamentations 3 concerning God’s wrath.  I wrestled for a bit with that.  So for me, some of the ways I have been able to find hope in these verses are:

·        To confess my fear to God.  Then to ask for faith to believe that no matter what our circumstance may look like – or our mind may be thinking or what the enemy might be whispering, that GOD IS GOOD. Period.

·        To remember His continued Kindness to Jerusalem in the midst of their rebellion. Reflect on what the study points us to concerning what Jeremiah was showing us: that all hope seemed to have been lost for them. Yet God provided salvation if the people would cry out to Him and seek Him in true repentance and faith. Faith – not fear. Hope in God.

I want to draw a parallel between Jerusalem (in Lamentations) and the disciples in the boat (in Matthew).  They were, in both case, in the midst of a critical time – a time of crisis. They needed to know this – they also needed to cry out to the Lord.  You will find that all through the Bible . . . when we see our need, cry out to the only One who is able to save . . . He is faithful to save.  Grace. Mercy.

In order to grow in our faith and move away from a fear that causes us to run away from God instead of into His arms, we must choose to believe that in all things He causes good for those who love Him and are called [Romans 8:28]. In all things! Trust and believe in the Truth of His Word and His Faithfulness to His promises. In Day 4 “Walk on Truth” we are pointed to Acts 4:29-31 and what happened “when they prayed.” We were encouraged to make it our prayer that “no matter the outcome and no matter how frightened we feel, no matter how things appear, we will walk forward in the Spirit by faith, fearlessly…”

As New Testament Christians, we have the perspective of being on this side of the cross.  As believers we need not fear His wrath because it was poured out upon Christ at the Cross. Let’s keep our focus on the Finished Work of the Cross (His death, burial, and resurrection) giving thanks and praise to Him for what He has already accomplished on our behalf.  And as we “be still to know that He is God”, I pray that we begin to hear Him speak “peace” to our souls – and that more and more of the Fear that has prevented us from moving forward will begin to melt away and that an increased Faith would begin to arise.

Have you entrusted everything to Him? Do you believe in His transforming power? Will you take a step away from fear and move towards faith in Him this week?

Praying for transformed lives as we submit to His Word in Faith not Fear!

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