October 14, 2018 - Inscriptions From The Heart
October 14, 2018
Pastor Immanuel Garcera
Fear is a big part of our lives. It stems from past hurts, present circumstances, and possible unknown future outcomes. Fear stemming from trauma can have devastating effects. It can often shape our identity so much that we can never recover. For example, I have accidentally cut my fingers so many times from the various hobbies I have taken up over the years. One really bad cut was when I was making a cardboard sculpture. I was using a ruler with my left hand making an L shape with my fingers, pressing down firmly on the cardboard and sliding the exacto-knife down the ruler with my right hand when the unexpected happed. The blade, instead of following the ridge of the ruler, while I was making a downward cut, suddenly jumped off the ruler’s edge and straight through my thumb. I bled. I bled everywhere. Now every time I see or handle an exacto-knife, I get a little shiver down my spine and a little tingle where I got cut so many years ago.
One of the first instances the Bible talks about fear is in (surprise, surprise) the book of Genesis. God was in the process of making a covenant with Abram, promising him that he would be a great nation (Genesis 12:1-3). But before the covenant was made, there was a skirmish involving rescuing Lot, Abram’s nephew. This is where our passage comes in: Genesis 15:1 says “After these things the word of the LORD came to Abram in a vision: ‘Fear not, Abram, I am your shield; your reward shall be very great.’” Now, one thing we can get from this passage is that Abram was fearful but the Lord gives him, what some have labeled, “divine encouragement”. One of the reasons Abram was fearful was probably because he made very powerful enemies when he rescued his nephew Lot from the hands of kings that captured him, his family, and possessions. Secondly, he was fearful because he was still childless, without an heir (he went into battle and could have died). Notice where God points to when He told Abram to have hope; the Lord pointed to Himself. Not so much what he will do (“shielding”) but more on who the Lord will be to Abram – “His shield”. Abram, because of his past actions now has to live with his present circumstance of living with the fear of retaliation from powerful enemies. But apart from this, God is also there to remind Abram who He will be to him despite his fears.
Now, we have all had, or have right now an “exacto-knife” of sorts – or a “fear-of-retaliation-from-powerful-enemies” kind of thing where once that thought enters our mind we are fearful. What is this “thing” for you? This object of fear can be so powerful that it can have a huge impact on our future to live for God’s purpose and for His glory. Now, who is the Lord to you? Is He your shield – powerful enough to confide in, even when you’re fearful? If He’s not at the moment, let me remind you (through the Word) that in Abram, turned Abraham – we have been blessed with a Saviour that whether in death or life, we can have faith that He will save us – one way or another. So, just like Abraham – know who the Lord is and remember: fear not.
To God be the glory!