As the war between Hamas and Israel intensifies, the world is sitting on the edge of its seat, and so is the Church. Some of us are filled with fear, others with anxiety, and many with anger. But in the midst of it all, there's one crucial truth we must hold onto: God is firmly in control.
God's Unshaken Control
Surprise attacks, uncertain times, and the actions of evil people may stir anger within us, and that's okay, as long as it's a righteous anger. But often, this anger leads to fear because we feel like we're losing control. We all have a natural desire to be in control, but when we try to cling to it or let our lack of control overwhelm us, it distances us from God rather than bringing us closer. This path leads to fear, anxiety, depression, and even bitterness, not just in global events like those in Israel, but also in our everyday lives.
Trust in the Lord
In these times, we must trust in the Lord with all our hearts, as Proverbs 3:5-6 beautifully reminds us: "Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to Him, and He will make your paths straight." We don't see the whole picture, but God does.
Psalm 37:1-13 - A Perfect Guide
Psalm 37 offers us a perfect guide for dealing with troubling situations. When bad things happen, when evil people do their worst, what are we to do?
1. Do Not Fret: The Hebrew word for fret, "Her-ra," means to become angry and even to burn. It's the kind of anger that led Cain to murder his brother. We mustn't let our anger burn and consume us, as the passage wisely states, "It leads only to evil."
2. Trust in the Lord: When everything seems uncertain and out of control, we must trust God. We don't see everything, and we don't know everything. Our lives seem long, but they are short compared to eternity. God knows it all. Just like we wouldn't trust a personal trainer to build a jet plane, we shouldn't rely on ourselves, but on the One who knows everything.
3. Do Good: We cannot allow others to dictate who we are and what we do. Instead, we are called to love, not seek revenge. As 1 Peter 3:9 reminds us, "Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult. On the contrary, repay evil with blessing because to this, you were called."
4. Be Still: In Psalm 37, the word "still" means ceasing to be motionless and waiting patiently. In these moments of turmoil, it's easy to become restless and try to figure things out ourselves. However, we must be still and wait for God's guidance. While we wait, we should be praying for those who are hurt, for those who hurt others to find Jesus, and for God to work in our hearts.
When you find yourself in a situation that feels like rollerblading down a hill with no control, remember these principles: Trust in the Lord, do not let anger consume you, do good, and be still, waiting on God's guidance. These actions will not only help you navigate through challenging times but also bring glory to our Heavenly Father. In this way, we can reflect His love and hope to a world in need of peace and assurance.