Romans 8:31b – If God is for us, who can ever be against us?
I hate spiders. Stupid little monsters. All of them. I mean, I like that they exist – just for the bug population control – but, I don’t want to be around them. I spent one summer seeing those things everywhere – worst summer ever. It’s like they were following me. Spiders are second only to pickles in my disdain folder, but I’ll save that for another blog.
Truth be told, I don’t find that I am bothered too much by daddy long legs. I can typically grab them up by a leg and chuck them outside, but the rest of them… NOPE. As a matter of fact, I have developed a new NON-touch way of ridding my house of them: the vacuum. It’s a no squish, no touch, no surprises way to make them simply…*poof* disappear. Crank up the vacuum, put the nozzle close to them, then FWOOMP. Done. Gone. Hasta la vista baby! Now, I know that they are just relocated into my vacuum, but still, they never get out. At least that’s my story and I am sticking to it.
I do realize that a spider fear is not something I am all alone in, but I sometimes think I go a little overboard. Last night, as we were watching our favorite show on the couch a little booger came down from the ceiling right in my view! That nasty little thing was staring at me and mocking my peace-filled relaxation. I grabbed just above him, attempting to get his web string, pushed forward so as to not have him drop onto me, stood up super-fast and then spilled my drink all over myself. Making matters worse, when I jumped up from the couch, I looked at my hand, and guess what??? No. Spider. What the heck. Seriously. NOW where in the world did it go? I, now dripping from my spilled drink, freeze in place and scan the couch, my pants, and the carpet for movement of any kind so as to be able to spot the nasty thing.
But then, I realize, this is dumb. Spiders are dumb, yep, but my fear of them is dumber. Fear – healthy fear – isn’t a terrible thing. A fear of spiders in particular isn’t terrible either because some, albeit very few, can be harmful to humans. But the irrational, exaggerated fear, isn’t a good thing. Fear makes us do weird things.
In our lives, all too often we concentrate on fear or seek out scarcity and it causes us to freeze, or worse yet, mess up great things going on our lives. Fear gets in the way of progress and healthy momentum for us in our families, careers, and church. Paul writes, if the Lord is for us, who can be against us! What a great reminder of WHOSE we are! Furthermore, WHO we are, is a people of reformation. This congregation is faithful, creative and bold in both vision and practice. It’s one of the things that called me to serve here! With all the new and exciting things going on at Christ Lutheran, I certainly have NOT been disappointed. We are a people who do not fear. We make bold leaps of faith for the sake of the Gospel, and if we look at what God has done here, we have the evidence in hand that being a people who are bold, and not full of fear, is the way God wants us to live out the Gospel. Be encouraged brothers and sisters. This is an amazing time to be here at Christ Lutheran.
For our prayer, read through Psalm 27. Keep this one close to you at all times. And when the “spiders” start dropping around you, pull this out and read it through again.
Be uplifted and encouraged, for the Lord our God is with us!
+ Pastor Matt
Triumphant Song of Confidence
1 The Lord is my light and my salvation;
whom shall I fear?
The Lord is the stronghold[a] of my life;
of whom shall I be afraid?
2 When evildoers assail me
to devour my flesh—
my adversaries and foes—
they shall stumble and fall.
3 Though an army encamp against me,
my heart shall not fear;
though war rise up against me,
yet I will be confident.
4 One thing I asked of the Lord,
that will I seek after:
to live in the house of the Lord
all the days of my life,
to behold the beauty of the Lord,
and to inquire in his temple.
5 For he will hide me in his shelter
in the day of trouble;
he will conceal me under the cover of his tent;
he will set me high on a rock.
6 Now my head is lifted up
above my enemies all around me,
and I will offer in his tent
sacrifices with shouts of joy;
I will sing and make melody to the Lord.
7 Hear, O Lord, when I cry aloud,
be gracious to me and answer me!
8 “Come,” my heart says, “seek his face!”
Your face, Lord, do I seek.
9 Do not hide your face from me.
Do not turn your servant away in anger,
you who have been my help.
Do not cast me off, do not forsake me,
O God of my salvation!
10 If my father and mother forsake me,
the Lord will take me up.
11 Teach me your way, O Lord,
and lead me on a level path
because of my enemies.
12 Do not give me up to the will of my adversaries,
for false witnesses have risen against me,
and they are breathing out violence.
13 I believe that I shall see the goodness of the Lord
in the land of the living.
14 Wait for the Lord;
be strong, and let your heart take courage;
wait for the Lord!