Devotion for December 20, 2023

“Lord, take notice of the threats they have made, and allow us, your servants, to speak your message with all boldness.” (Acts 4:29, GNT)

We all have fears. Too often, though, we let them rule us and stop us from taking a stand for what we know God wants us to do.

Like Daniel standing in the lion’s den, we face people and situations that threaten to destroy us and our witness for Christ. But we have a choice: Will we succumb to our fears, or will we stand up for God in spite of those fears?

If you want to overcome fear that’s dragging you down, you need to understand the benefits of choosing to stand up for what God wants. And most importantly, you need to see that — when you do what God wants you to do — you earn a clear victory over fear.

On the other hand, every time you give in to a fear, it becomes more intense. Fear grows every time you refuse to do what God wants you to do. And eventually, you’ll feel cornered by it.

So what do you do? Follow the lead of early Christians. We’re not the first generation of Christians to face fear. Early believers faced all kinds of persecution that surely made them afraid. The book of Acts tells how they stood up to fear.

As Peter and John proclaimed Jesus boldly in Acts 4, they came up against fierce opposition. So they prayed, “Lord, take notice of the threats they have made, and allow us, your servants, to speak your message with all boldness” (Acts 4:29, GNT). Instead of giving in to fear, they moved forward boldly in spite of it.

You can do the same. Stand up to fear. Fear doesn’t respond to logic, so your only chance to get rid of fear is to trust God and face it.

Never, ever forget this: God won’t part the water in front of you until you take your first step (see how God did this for Joshua’s men at the Jordan river in Joshua 3:15). When you take a step of faith, then God shows you the path. But that won’t happen if you stand still, wrapped up in your fear.

Prayer

Lord, take away my fear and fill me with Your strength and peace. Let my words and actions, done out of love, always glorify Your name. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Stay encouraged!

Pastor Mike

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