Concern for our Children 

We’ve never seen anything like it in our lifetimes. Evil is increasing at an exponential rate! Things considered taboo and depraved just a few years ago are now not only accepted but being forced upon our society. Places and experiences once considered safe are now a battleground of sexual confusion. Without doubt, our children are the target of many depraved ideologies intended to groom them for engagement and participation in all sorts of debauchery.  

It is natural to fear for our children in the midst of such increasing perversion. If evil continues to grow at this rate, how will they make it? These fears should force us to deep intercession for the future of our families. 

My wife and I frequently discuss this topic and we pray for our precious grandchildren. Recently, when I was expressing concern, my wife Letha reminded me: “The same grace that has seen us through the most difficult times in our lives will see them through. That grace wasn’t given before we needed it, it was measured out to us daily; He was and is so faithful to supply what we need. I know He will do the same for them.”

And that is the solution to the fears we have regarding the future of our families! God’s grace is and will always be sufficient!

When Paul was struggling with needing a touch from God, the Lord informed him that His “grace is sufficient…” (II Corinthians 12:9). Paul took from this that whatever he was experiencing, God’s grace would keep him, would see him through. He could survive through the challenge because he had everything he needed. We can apply this teaching to the future of our children.

I used to hear old timers preach about, “God’s Keeping Power.” God kept Daniel through the lion’s den. He kept Joshua through the battlefield. He kept Elijah through the famine. He kept the disciples through the storm. He got themthrough! Surely, the same keeping power that kept these heroes of the faith is still available to our children and future generations! He will get them through

Many times, I have faced impossible situations, immovable mountains, and untamable temptations. Yet God’s grace was sufficient; He kept me! God’s grace was more than enough. Grace was provided, in increasing measure, as needed. As the challenges increased, so did God’s great grace. 

In the early 1940’s, Annie J. Flint, a woman who lost both her parents when she was 6 years old and who now suffered rheumatoid arthritis to the point that she was wheelchair bound, wrote these song lyrics: 

“He giveth more grace as the burdens grow greater. He sendeth more strength when labors increase. To added afflictions, he addeth his mercy, to multiplied trials, his multiplied peace.

His love has no limits, his grace has no measure, His power no boundary known unto men
For out of his infinite riches in Jesus, He giveth, and giveth, and giveth again.”

God’s love and grace has kept us all these years and will keep His children until the end. If I did not believe this, I’d panic about the future of my grandchildren in this increasingly vile world.

Finally, recall God’s promise of protection – for us and for our children in the future.  

 “We are protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.” (I Peter 1:5)

FEAR (get over it)

Fear get over it

I want to address one of the more powerful forces in the universe – fear. Especially as it relates to how we process life and opportunities, fear can control, intimidate and dominate our lives.

The term “paralyzing fear” is legit – some fear is so powerful that it actually leaves us unable to move.

The biggest trouble with fear is, it controls our ability to dream. Some find it nearly impossible to visualize a positive outcome because their fear dominates any optimism. Like a playground bully, fear intimidates the vision right out of many leaders. Napoleon Hill said, “Fear is a darkroom where negatives develop.”

Don’t let your fear of the future control your future!

Don’t allow fear of repeated failures to dictate your future!

Don’t tolerate fear as an uncontrollable force!

It can be controlled.

Here are some insights on how to beat fear:

Identify your fear. Ignoring it or denying it won’t help. Label it by name. Fear is an enemy.

Face your fear. Unless your fear is based on some life-threatening danger, face it down. Stare at fear right in the face. You may find that fear itself is intimidated by courage. Fear is a liar.

Push back. A good old fashioned, “I’m not gonna take it any more” attitude can result in fear backing away from the fight. You might need some help with this one, enlist a friend or two to help you push back. Fear is a coward.

Move in for the kill. Once you detect that fear is backing up, don’t let up. Push it all the way to the hell from which it came. Fear can be defeated.

Apply God’s Word to your fear! The phrase “fear not” appears 365 times in the Bible (one for every day of the year). “For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline. “II Timothy 1:7 (NLT) God does not want you under the control of fear.  Rather, He wants us to live confident and powerful lives.

Get over your fear and live out your dreams!

you’d better guard your heart

I love the wisdom of The Proverbs. Tonight in our Community Group, we are reading and discussing Proverbs chapter 4. My favorite verse in this chapter is 23: “Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life.” (NLT) It speaks of the priority of heart-health, and I don’t mean taking care of your ticker.

The reason we need to guard our heart is, it gets hurt. It gets bruised. It gets crushed. Normal wear and tear on your spirit can wear you down and your heart can really ache.

How do we get our hearts hurt?

People disappoint us. We get lied to. Someone proves themselves disloyal. We fail. Sometimes, you just get tired. Life is full of disappointments and let-downs. You get passed over for the promotion. A relationship ends. Someone you love dies. These are the painful realities of life. No one can completely avoid it – hearts are fragile and they break.

So it is vitally important for you to protect your heart. Don’t just offer it up for anyone to take pot shots at. Guard it.

Guard it by watching the right stuff and reading healthy things and listening to stuff that will build you up. And maybe most important: be sure that you have someone who is looking out for your heart. Someone who loves you and will do anything to protect you. Guard your heart.

Don’t try to be a hero and survive if your spirit is crushed – you are strong but you’re not that strong.   If your heart is broken and you allow it to go untreated, it will turn to stone. Self-preservation will take over and you will not allow others close enough to hurt you again.  Once our hearts turn hard, the pain only intensifies. You were not created to live with a crushed heart.

When (not if) your heart gets crushed, remember that God is close to those who have a broken heart (Psalms 34:18) and He wants to heal you (Isaiah 61:1, Luke 4:18). He wants to remove your heart of stone and replace it with a new tender heart (Ezekiel 11:19, 36:26).  He wants to love you back into wholeness.

Guard your heart…why? Proverbs tells us …”For it determines the course of life“.

Your future well-being is on the line. And God has some wonderful plans for you! Be sure that you are ready for it! Guard your heart!