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Trusting God's Heart...
Marc Chagall -Detail

Trusting God's Heart

Finding Courage for Difficult Days...

by John J. Parsons

Psalm 56:3(4h) Hebrew Text

"When I am afraid, I put my trust in you." (Psalm 56:3)

THERE IS NO FEAR IN LOVE, and therefore over and over the Spirit of God says, "don't be afraid..." When we are afraid, we are believing the lie there is something beyond God's control or reach, and therefore God is "not enough"... In times of testing you must remind yourself of what is real. God formed you in your mother's womb, breathed into you nishmat chayim, the breath of life, and numbers all your days... Every breath you take, every heartbeat in your chest is ordained from heaven, and indeed, there is not a moment of your life apart from God's sovereign and sustaining grace. So what, then, are you afraid of? Dying? Judgment in the world to come? Being left unloved, bereft of home, abandoned, consigned to outer darkness? King David said, "If I make my bed in Hell, behold, you are there" (Psalm 139:8). Look, the LORD God is not only present in your "happy moments," when you feel "put together" and respectable, but he is present in your desperate moments, in your hunger, your thirst, and in your secrets. May we never lose sight of God's love, especially in times of distress and trouble, since we trust that he is always working all things together for our ultimate good (Rom. 8:28).

The Name of the LORD (יהוה) means "Presence" and "Love" (Exod. 3:14; 34:6-7). Yeshua said, "I go to prepare a place for you," which means that his presence and love are waiting for you in whatever lies ahead (Rom. 8:35-39). To worry is "practicing the absence" of God instead of practicing His Presence... Trust the word of the Holy Spirit: "For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for healing peace and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope (Jer. 29:11). The Word always speaks hope.

Take comfort that your Heavenly Father sees when the sparrow falls; he arrays the flower in its hidden valley; and he calls each star by name. More importantly, the Lord sees you and knows your struggle with fear. Come to him with your needy heart and trust him to deliver you from the burdens of your soul (Matt. 11:28). Shalom means being free from fear.

This is a word for the exiles of every age: Be not afraid - al-tirah – not of man, nor of war, nor of tribulation, nor even of death itself (Rom. 8:35-39). If God be for us, who can be against us? Indeed, Yeshua came to die to destroy the power of death "and to release all those who through fear of death were subject to lifelong slavery" (Heb. 2:14-15). The resurrection of the Messiah is the focal point of history - not the "dust of death." Death does not have the final word. Indeed, because Yeshua is alive, we also shall live (John 14:19). May your chesed, O LORD, be upon us, as we wait for You (Psalm 33:22).

Nachman of Breslov once is reported to have said that "The whole earth is a very narrow bridge (כָּל־הָעוֹלָם כֻּלּוֹ גֶּשֶׁר צַר מְאד), and the point of life is never to be afraid." Likewise we understand Yeshua to be the Bridge to the Father, the narrow way of passage that leads to life. He calls out to us in the storm of this world, "Take heart. It is I; be not afraid" (Matt. 14:27). When Peter answered the call and attempted to walk across the stormy waters, he lost courage and began to sink, but Yeshua immediately reached out his hand and took hold of him, saying, "O you of little faith, why did you doubt (lit., think twice)?"

We must be careful not to let the light in us become darkness (Luke 11:35). The love and acceptance of God is the answer to our fear, not the thought of being judged by Him or attempting to merit his favor through religion. God's love is our hope, and this hope gives us courage to persevere the storms of the day... May your chesed, O LORD, be upon us, as we wait for You (Psalm 33:22).

Hebrew-English Transliteration:

Hebrew Transliteration

yom ira ani eleykha evtach

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