Time For God: Day 16

Written by Paul Beckingham

Focus: Psalm 125:5
As for such as turn aside to their crooked ways, the Lord shall lead them away with the workers of iniquity. Peace be upon Israel!
The group was asked to work in pairs. Each person had two minutes to share a vivid childhood memory. The volume of conversation rose rapidly like a thermometer dropped on a hot stove. Animated stories poured from enthusiastic participants. They evoked laughter and tears. Pain and peace, trauma and triumph filled the air.

Few things are as vivid as a childhood nightmare. Recurring dreams haunt many people. You may recall one like mine. In the darkness of night you can’t see far ahead. A faceless enemy pursues you. In panic you run ever faster. You hear footsteps behind you. They get louder. The gap closes between you and the stranger. His breath is palpable on your neck. You feel sure he’s just about to strike. With a sudden start you’re awake and hyper-vigilant. Your heart races wildly.

My dream disturbed me on many childhood nights. I woke in the dark, sweating coldly. Terrified, I was rigid with fear. My adult mind reminds me that life is rarely as frightening as that paralyzing childhood dream. Awake, I call the name of Jesus.

In today’s Focus verse, David considers tragic outcomes that face those who turn their backs on God. The danger is real. In life-threatening situations David discovers how God provides a safe way home. He shows how calamities clutter a perilous path. Yet, all who seek Him surely find Him if they seek God with all their heart.

The Lord of every circumstance invites you to draw near. He holds you close. His way out is often His safe way through. When there is no way, God can make a way for you. His timing may be slower than your racing fears. Wait for Him; be not afraid.

God loves imperfect people. God rescues the perishing; His favour rests upon the humble broken-hearted. God’s Spirit hovers over the deep fears that hold your heart. He sets you free in the Saviour’s Name. Our help is in the name of the Lord…

What nightmares, real or imagined, lock your heart in fear? When has God freed fear’s trap for you? How did He change the outcomes you dreaded? How did you receive His peace? How might you share your story to release a friend from fear?

Father of Light, shine the love of Jesus into my heart’s dark recesses. Release the dove of your Holy Spirit into my life. Show me how to come alongside a person held by fear. Cup their pain in your tender hands. Assist them to release their hurts to you. I pray in the powerful Name of Jesus. Amen.  

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