2 Timothy 1:7 His Prevailing Wind

This morning's verse was:

For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.


Have you ever experienced that spirit of fear? It's a dark wind blowing through your heart, freezing your soul. It might have been someone saying, "I don't love you any more." It could have been the dreaded diagnosis. Or maybe you received a late night call asking if you were the next of kin. There was that moment when your heart teetered between hope and dread, but the wind of fear pushed you over the edge in to the dark chasm where hope seemed to vanish. This fear takes you into the environs of hell, seemingly distant from the God of hope. Rest assured He's not distant. Remember, God has not given us a spirit of fear... Yet it may seem that way as you walk out of the house, leave the hospital room, or drive to the police station. You feel broken, full of dread and fear, but as you wend your way out into the unknown future where the wind of fear tries to keep you pinned down, remember that God has given us a spirit of power and of love and of a sound mind. Let God's breath blow you back on course.



It's Jesus, Peter's Master, giving you the power to love in the face of painful words that cut to the heart, denying you love.


It's Jesus standing behind you, His nail-pierced hand on your shoulder, as you face the pain.


Jesus' hot tears mingle with yours at the morgue, the funeral and the grave.


Only the dynamic force of His Word will restore you. Only agape love, sacrificing self to face pain, will sustain you. Only God-given discipline, grown out of miles walked with Him, will allow you to face the lonely future, knowing He is there. And He is. He's the wind at your back, blowing you out of darkness, blowing the cold dread away, replacing it with power, love and self-control.


Like a bell sounding in the distance, muffled by the storm, come words rung from the apostle Paul's life, who was surely buffeted by the wind of fear. To your quailing heart he says, 'God is there.' God is always the next breath blowing into your heart, the prevailing wind that puts you back on course.
For this reason I also suffer these things; nevertheless I am not ashamed, for I know whom I have believed and am persuaded that He is able to keep what I have committed to Him until that Day. (verse 12)


Have you ever experienced the spirit of power? The spirit of love? The spirit of a sound mind? This wind, this spirit of hope, blows away the fear that seeks to pin you down to a hopeless world, wracked with anger, disfigured by pain, achingly isolated. With belief--faith--comes the fresh, stiff breeze blowing you into the future, along the path He blazed for you. He was unloved, bleeding, deserted, yet His path restores you to the reality of life in the light, where you will stand with Him throughout life's storms.

_____




I painted a portrait of my great-grandfather, known only to me as Grandpa Klopp, a man I've heard my mother reminisce about all her life. I know very little about him. The legacy he left is but a whisper to me. A man of faith. A loving father and grandfather. He was a minister, married twice, and father to a little girl who grew up without her mother. He crossed the country in a wagon and built a sod house on the barren plains of Nebraska. His life was accompanied by tragedy: a young wife dying; a daughter who walked away from the faith in which she was raised to follow the vagaries of Mary Baker Eddy, taking her five children with her. Yet he was greatly loved by his granddaughter, my mother.



I see traces of his face in my uncle and cousin, and wonder where his DNA resides in me. I like his eyes. Maybe a bit of my vision came from him. Maybe he prayed for me and God answered his prayer. I hope to meet him in heaven. Then we can talk about the storms of fear the blew counter to the wind of God and how we both withstood them, faithfully committed to the Lord Jesus Christ until the day we each met Him face-to-face. It will be a good day.

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