DR. DAVE BRYAN
It was a pretty dark season in the United States. It was 1933 and Americans were feeling the brunt of the Great Depression. Worry and anxiety about the days ahead filled their hearts. But in the midst of such difficult times, they elected a new president: Franklin D. Roosevelt. And they listened to his inauguration speech. Today, 87 years later, I read his speech. And once again, I heard these words. “. . . the only thing we have to fear is fear itself.”
Those words meant something to me this morning. For there is more than enough fear to go around these days. We fear when we consider our economy. We fear when we consider the current health crisis. We fear when we see our culture slipping further away from the truth. It is all around us, and it is in every headline we read. But the real enemy we face is not the circumstance. It is the response of fear to the news of the day.
My choice is this. I can either react in fear or I can respond in faith. Our concerns for our health and well-being are real, but I do not have to be a slave to the fear that might use those concerns to control me. No, I can stand in faith, trusting in God rather than my own ability. Reactions look for somebody to blame, speak with anger or despair, or lead me to hide and avoid the issues altogether. Responses seek wisdom, speak with genuine care and compassion, and lead me to follow Christ in all aspects of my life.
I read something else this morning. It’s found in 2 Timothy 1:7 “For God has not given us a spirit of timidity [fear], but of power and love and discipline.” The spirit of fear has a source that is not from our Heavenly Father. He gives us a spirit that sees beyond a circumstance and sees the Kingdom of God.
So, dear friends, in these days, fear not! We serve a risen Savior who leads us to wise choices and sound, reasonable actions. Now, go and offer someone a word of hope. And yes, wash your hands!
It’s a joy to be your pastor!