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Prayer, Plain and Simple

“You will not fear the terror of night.” Psalm 91:5a

“Fear not.” ~Jesus

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By some counts the imperative, “Fear not,” occurs 365 times in the Bible: one for every day of the year. And for good reason. We all have cause to fear. Those causes hit us constantly. A sickness, a strained relationship, severe weather, economic hardship….The list is long.

Many fears are caused by mere happenstance. But some fear is actually instigated by wickedness with people acting as agents of evil. Such was the case last night in Manchester, England when suicide bomber, Salman Abedi, chose to end his own life and the lives of many young, innocent people.

Yes. There is evil in this world. And some human beings perpetrate it. And with that evil, great fear ensues. Evil’s stock and trade is instigating fear through terror.

The repercussions from the bombing last night are impacting the world. Grief, confusion, anger, and fear are natural human reactions to what threatens our very existence. But what do we do in the face of genuine threat and rational fear? God instructs us – even commands us – to fear not. It seems an impossible mandate. The natural human instinct to self-preservation triggers fear. 

But we have something stronger and more enduring than human instinct and natural threat. We have the promise of God’s love and the encouragement that He works all things out for good. That doesn’t mean that all things are good. This incident is a case in point. Yet we defy fear with the confidence of God’s presence and His goodness and a life beyond this world so marked by the surge of human evil. We are not promised protection from persecution – evil pushing back against the existence of goodness and hope. Yet in the face of this, we choose to not fear. We make a conscious choice to not allow terror to shake us.

God is our refuge and strength,
always ready to help in times of trouble.
So we will not fear… (Psalm 46:1,2)

In the midst of fearful circumstances, God invites us, God commands us and then empowers us to rule over our natural instincts, including the instinct to fear. We are bigger than fear because God is bigger than the fear in us.

So, we pray plain and simple prayers in the face of complex and devastating circumstances…

Father,

The threats around us are real, not imagined. And the pull to allow circumstances to trigger fear is strong. Yet, I want to choose to draw myself closer to You and to respond to Your call to turn from the temptation to fear.

You have commanded me to not allow my heart to be troubled or afraid. So, Lord, with that instruction comes the grace to obey. I ask for Your grace in my life so that I can rise above the stormy, raging fears and face them head on with You.

You are my fearless Leader. Lead me on the path of fearless living.

Lord, please be with the victims and their loved ones. We ask for supernatural healing for those who are suffering today. Grant comfort and peace to those who are devastated by the death of their loved ones.

Give wisdom to the leaders of Great Britain as well as the leaders of all the world. Give them practical steps to stop these threats. Show us how to quell hatred.

Jesus, when the angel announced Your birth, he announced peace on earth and goodwill to all the earth. Let it be.

In Jesus’ Name

Amen

 

Photo credit: Foter.com

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