Jesus says in Luke 12:30, “Do not be afraid, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the Kingdom.”
You may have heard that read in worship this morning, because it is from the Gospel reading for this Sunday.
My first reaction in hearing those words from Jesus is, “but there is a lot that may cause us to be afraid.”
We may be afraid of contracting Covid. I’ve already had Covid twice even though I have been vaccinated and boosted. Living in Florida I might be afraid of a hurricane coming to wipe us out of our home. My heart goes out to families in Kentucky that were hit with killing flood waters without warning in the middle of the night. With all that is happening in Ukraine, if things get worse, we might worry and be afraid of a nuclear war breaking out.
There are many other things that might bring fear and anxiety into people’s lives.
But Jesus said, “Do not be afraid.”
The Father has our back. He has already given us the Kingdom.
What does that mean to have the Kingdom? It is not really a place. The Kingdom is the powerful presence of God in the world and in our lives. We have Jesus, God’s Son, who gives us eternal life, the forgiveness of sins, and His promised presence in our lives. With Jesus we can live peacefully and confidently that no matter what happens to us we have a promised future.
A couple of weeks ago while I was greeting people after worship, I shook the hand of an older lady. She was wearing a beautiful dress that had flowers in pastel colors. She was also wearing a hat that reminded me of my mother who always insisted on wearing a hat to church. The lady brightly smiled at me. As I shook her hand, I told her she had a beautiful smile and how very happy she looked. She immediately responded by saying, “I’m so depressed all the time.” She then asked if she could have a hug.
Anxiety and depression are a huge problem in our culture for some reason. It causes a lot of fear because people who suffer from anxiety and depression cannot always identify why they feel the way they do.
What can we do to help? Listen to them without judgement. Pray with and for them. Let them know that you care and in the right time, in the right place, offer the words, “Do not be afraid, it is the Father’s good pleasure to give you the Kingdom.”
Lately I’ve been watching reruns of the TV series ‘Touched By An Angel’. The song sung by Della Reese has these words:
When you walk down the road
Heavy burden, heavy load
I will rise and walk with you.
I’ll walk with you
Until the sun don’t even shine
Walk with you
I’ll be there all the time
I tell you, I’ll walk with you.
Believe me, I’ll walk with you.
I wonder if that is not what Jesus is telling us when he says, “Do not be afraid.” His promise is that He will walk with us through our daily journey.
God Loves You and So Do I
What in your life causes you to be afraid?
How does your faith in Jesus help you in times of fear?
Are there specific scriptures that come to mind that you find helpful?
Eric is our current Webmaster and works on the NLS Communications Team. Raised in Judaism, he found Christ and the New Testament at age 16 in a Southern Baptist Church. He searched many denominations for the real church, only to find the Holy Spirit is present in all of them. He's worked for One for Israel, a group of native Israeli believers who are sharing the gospel in the holy land in Hebrew and is part of the only Hebrew speaking seminary in Israel.