Faith; May 24, 2023

Proverbs 29:25 Fear of man will prove to be a snare,
but whoever trusts in the Lord is kept safe.

There are several verses in this chapter that seem very applicable to the world as we see it today, showing once again that though technology certainly changes, human nature doesn’t. That’s why the Bible, though thousands of years old, is still fully applicable today. And of course, as the Lord Himself says, “I the Lord do not change.” (Malachi 3:6)That’s why this verse is as true today as it was the day it was written. We see people all around us who are snared because they fail to stand on their convictions – or maybe they don’t have any real convictions! It is when we are fully committed to our Creator, knowing that He loved us so much as to send His Son to die in our place, enabling us to live eternally with Him, that we are indeed kept safe. The theme for the readings at this point is Faith, which of course manifests as trust, as this verse says. The writer of Hebrews rightly commented that “Without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.” (Hebrews 11:6) If we don’t believe God exists and is knowable, then we will indeed fear man because that will be our only frame of reference. The thing is, fear makes logic go out the window. In the recent pandemic, governments and media deliberately stoked fear as a way to control people, ignoring scientific facts all the while trumpeting, “Follow the science!” The facts are now coming out, too late for the tens of thousands of people with “vaccine” injuries, not to mention those who went to an early death. Just yesterday I read a study that showed that COVID deaths could have been cut in half by something as simple as aspirin, but that wouldn’t have fit the desired narrative. Sadly, the stock of “experts” has been greatly diminished, and that applies to those who are honestly saying what they really do know, as well as those who are actively deceiving. The benefit of all that is that those who think are now more likely to seek and trust God, because He alone is fully reliable. As an old hymn puts it, “My faith, it is an oaken staff that leads me on my way.”

I have as much natural desire to be liked and accepted by the people around me as anyone, but I had a major obstacle or two. In the first place, I was a Caucasian in Japan, which instantly put up various barriers. In the second place, I was a missionary kid in a school for military dependents, which made me a different kind of outsider. For a child and teenager, that was at times traumatic. God in His incredible grace gave me a woman who accepted and loved me as I was, and 54 years ago today we were married. That helped immensely, because as long as she loved me I didn’t particularly fear the opinions of other people. That is a huge strength even now. Likewise, over the years I have proved again and again that the Lord is perfectly trustworthy. I still get into trouble because of my own foolishness (as I did again yesterday by failing to notice an obstacle, tripping on it, and falling rather painfully) but that’s on me, not Him. I am to trust Him enough to let Him show me the obstacles in my way and avoid them, or else get over or through them, so that all of His purposes in allowing those obstacles to exist may be fulfilled, for my blessing and His glory.

Father, thank You for this reminder. Thank You for protecting me yesterday, that my glasses didn’t break and my injuries weren’t severe. Thank You particularly that I didn’t land on my left hand that I broke in January! Help me not yield to “short cuts” to fit my plans, the way I did yesterday, but rather follow You faithfully, on Your schedule for Your glory. Thank You. Praise God!

About jgarrott

Born and raised in Japan of missionary parents. Have been here as an adult missionary since 1981.
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