I Need Not Be Afraid!

I Need Not Be Afraid!

No Fear
 
Daily reports of crimes, terrorist threats, economic challenges, unrest and the like, locally and internationally, are enough to drive fear and consternation in the most courageous. One is led to ask, “How does one exist untouched or unfazed by all that the media reports and displays daily?” And to add, the prognostication for 2016 does not appear any brighter when we consider that we are entering the political season, which will carry its share of unrealistic promises and unnecessary political attacks. Yet, some persons are hopeful of employment and a better Bahamas with a significant reduction in crime. Given the aforementioned, how does one maintain his or her composure resisting the temptation to be overcome by fear and anxiety? I know of no other way than in and through Christ, and I add that is not a “light or trite matter” for me. Instead, it is a reality! Says Christ, “I am the Way, the Truth and the Life.” That statement carries weigh and authority because Christ says it, and He is not man that He should waver. What assurance! So why should I be afraid? Why should I fear? Accordingly, I share these few points with you.
 
Basis for “Fear Not”
The expression “fear not”, recorded in Luke 2:10, borne by an angel of the Lord carries much authority and divine backing. Accordingly, it ought to give us some sense of assurance, certainty and hope when we consider the “who”, “what”, “when” and “where” of the text. The Angel is from the Lord, and his message is one of joy and hope for all mankind both hope now and later. That ought to arrest our attention like nothing else.
 
What Does “Fear Not” Mean?
This question is best explained by reading more of the passage as recorded in Luke 2. There the Angel of the Lord exclaimed, “I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people.” So the message is for all people, or put another way, it is universal. Usually we do not find a one-gift that fits all, but this remedy is one that addresses the needs of all mankind. Verse eleven identifies the gift by explaining, “Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christa the Lord.” To know this Christ is to love Him, and to love Him is to prove Him; and to prove Him is to remain loyal to Him and His Word.  However, lest I overlook what is the message of Christ, I go back to verse 10, which is “joy.” Joy is not a now and then feeling but a lasting reality in Christ that enables one to do the unthinkable, compared to human standards, and to survive tough times, or put another way, come through trying situations, while others are collapsing and unable to cope.
 
And Now the Bonus
Some of us get bonuses only at Christmas or periodically. However, this “good news of great joy” extends beyond the current season into January, February -going back to December. It is year-round as noted in the above paragraph. This is why I personally do not see the need to resort to chance, worry, scheming, resentment or jealousy for that matter. With an embracing of the “Fear not” message, one is led to explore those things that tend to dignity, value and self worth. It is of interest to observe the preamble to the constitution of the Bahamas: “AND WHEREAS the People of this Family of Islands recognizing that the preservation of their Freedom will be guaranteed by a national commitment to Self-discipline, Industry, Loyalty, Unity and an abiding respect for Christian values and the Rule of Law.” It is my thinking that self-discipline, industry and hard work are better ingredients for the building of a nation. Again His message is more than a “fear not;” it is “good news of great joy.” And that is lasting even in the midst of sickness, apparent setbacks and trying circumstances, for it is in seeing Christ through the “cracks” of my life that I engender courage, faith, perspective and hope. Said the Lord years ago to His people through Jeremiah the prophet, “For I know the plans I have for you, . . . plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope” (Jeremiah 29:11 ESV).  That is still applicable and therefore I need not be afraid, for I know who holds my hand. Yes, I know who has my back and all of me. It is God!
 
Happy Christ-filled Holidays and a Blessed New Year!