/Wednesday, March 11, 2020
Greetings dear friends,
Don’t worry, I am not going to add to your fears and anxieties about the virus. I don’t believe that this is an apocalyptic event, but I do realize that it is starting to affect all of us, especially those who were down to their last roll of toilet-paper.
Each day as I pray about this situation and our missionaries around the world, I am drawn back to the comforting words of Scripture, “don’t be afraid.” According to my count, the phrase occurs 95 times in Scripture; most occurrences are in the Pentateuch, Prophets, and the Gospels.
It is hard not to be afraid when we see so much uncertainty around us, but please remember that fear can be a denial of the sovereignty of God. If we believe that God is all-powerful and that he loves us and has a plan for our lives, we must trust Him through the storms.
Many of the “super-heroes” of the Bible struggled with fear, and God told them, “don’t be afraid.” (Abraham, Moses, Joshua, Ruth) Jesus confronts fear repeatedly in the Gospels. It is OK to be cautious, careful, and concerned, but don’t be afraid. Paul wrote, “for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control (2 Tim. 1:7) – remember that on your next trip to Costco.
I will leave you with these words from Jesus:
“Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat, nor about your body, what you will put on. For life is more than food, and the body more than clothing. Consider the ravens: they neither sow nor reap, they have neither storehouse nor barn, and yet God feeds them. Of how much more value are you than the birds! And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life?” (Luke 12:22-25)
-Craig Kraft, Executive Director of Outreach Canada