Fear or Trust?
“And do not set your heart on what you will eat or drink; do not worry about it. For the pagan world runs after all such things, and your Father knows that you need them.
But seek his kingdom, and these things will be given to you as well.” Luke 12: 29-31
Our country has been blessed with an abundance of food and material things, much of which is essential, some beneficial, and with a lot, not even necessary. As you enter any market place in most cities, you are met with an overwhelming sense, there is much to be thankful. However, for those of us who have never known hunger or poverty, we go pass the cornucopia of amply stocked shelves day after day, never imagining it could all go away.
The crisis of the coronavirus pandemic has presented many with this stark reality; there is no definite, sustaining guarantee medical science will find absolute treatments and cures, the government will financially support everyone, there will always be enough food, and law-enforcement will always be there to protect us.
There is only one thing we can depend on:
“Our God remains absolutely sovereign over everything!”
So how does the sense of God’s sovereignty work for us in this time of crisis and does it work for everyone? It’s the blessed assurance He is in charge of every circumstance in our life, and there is absolutely not a thing that can force His Hand in the opposite direction of His Divine and Perfect Will. His Word is full of comfort and promises for all who trust and believe in His Goodness and Provision. He has given us His love letter, written in the script of His Son’s own blood, and in His Word, we are sustained, assured and nourished on the bread of life.
John 6: 43-51
Hoarding our Fears
There seems to be a run on a number of things at this time, and it depends on each one’s preference and values. That is why it’s puzzling concerning why there is a fear of running out of toilet paper. But fear begets fear, and even if something is not really needed, the fact that it is in demand and may disappear makes it a precious item. That brings me to where I want to make my point that when it comes to God’s sovereignty and provision, toilet paper doesn’t even escape His notice.
I recall, watching IFA’s ( Intercessors for America ) prayer call last week when Jeremy Story of Campus Renewal was giving an example of God’s wonderful sense of humor and ability to meet all of our needs anytime, and anywhere. It seems, Jeremy has a big family with seven children, and as he went out to the stores, not knowing what he would find, he was confident of one thing, the Lord knew His needs. As he looked for the coveted paper, there were none on the shelves and the store was overrun by many seeking the same thing. When, suddenly, the store clerk holding a package in tow, asked if he needed toilet paper, which he replied, a bit startled, “well yes”. And as he placed it in a cart and headed for the register, there were those asking, “Where did you get that?”
As he searched for over the counter medications for his children, he ran into the same uncertainty as to where he would find them. He was batting zero and did not know where to go. So, he got in his car and just started driving. It was at that moment the Lord spoke to his heart to turn into a shopping center he was not at all familiar. Right there in front of him was a drug store. So he went in and noticed the shelves stocked with all kinds of medicines, and noticed no other customers were in the store. What serendipity of God’s blessings to meet his needs all in one day! Proverbs 3: 5-6
Our family had a similar thing occur when we tried to find the meats we were accustomed to buying. There were none left. When we decided to shop at another store, we found only one package of each. As we gleaned from what was left, we were grateful to have exactly what we needed, no more and no less.
Scripture Reference: “Manna from Heaven”- Exodus 16: 17-18
The Word so beautifully demonstrates this. God shows us how to trust and give, instead of hoarding in fear. When Ruth and Naomi returned to the land of God’s people, they did not know how they were to get food. But God had made provision, by teaching His people not to glean their wheat fields, completely, but to always leave enough sheaves, behind, for those who were poor.
Scripture Reference:” Enough for the Poor”- Ruth 2:2
As I reflect, I can remember many times God came through for me, everything from finding something lost to arriving at the airport on time.
What does God’s Word say about His provisions in great things and small? There are so many promises, I could write books on them all.
“He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all–how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things?” Romans 8:32:
God held nothing back but gave us His Best, His Only-begotten Son, who came in the flesh and died for our sins. Jesus is acquainted with all our grief and all our needs and has made provision for all we lack in the best of times and in the worse of times.
If only we would believe and trust in His salvation and provision through faith in Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, and receive the Peace that passes all understanding, not the peace that the world gives or favorable circumstances, but God’s peace that is within us and assuring us, “ALL is Well”.
Finally, the Apostle Paul knew how to trust in the Lord in all circumstances, through sickness, persecution, imprisonment, rejection, shipwrecks and in all he was able to say:
“I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength.” Philippians 4:12-13