With No Fear

‘…Do not be afraid, Paul. You must stand trial before Caesar; and God has graciously given you the lives of all who sail with you.’ Acts 27:24

The weather turned severe and a boat with 276 people on board was doomed. At least that’s what the writer of Acts noted: “we finally gave up all hope of being saved.” (Acts 27:20) Two weeks without food, on a ship that danced with a hurricane constitutes turmoil. The apostle Paul was one of the passengers on that fateful voyage. Nature threatened. Circumstances taunted. Reality tempted. Paul was afraid. He was not alone.

Noah received dire news that the land was going to be destroyed. Peter was chained and thrown in prison. Joseph was set to die by his brothers’ hands. The Israelites were held captive for 430 years. The outcomes were unanimously similar in their shouts of defeat. Yet, God’s presence was clear and his name would be glorified. Noah listened and obeyed as he followed the divine plan building the ark. Peter was freed from his bonds by an angel of the Lord. Reuben told his brothers not to harm Joseph. Despite his fears, Moses surrendered to the Father’s plan, helping free the Israelites from Egypt.

David had plenty of experience with this saying, “The Lord is a refuge for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble.”(Psalm 9:9, NIV) The prophet Jeremiah relayed the following message from God: “See, I will defend your cause.”(Jeremiah 51:36) Things happen just the way God says they will.

Do you feel that you’ve done enough bad things to put you just out of God’s reach? Completely surrender to Him, and know you are in His warm embrace and can truly live a fearless life. God’s word is truth. His voice is inevitable. Listen and obey. Your times of trial will pass and you will have been blessed with heavenly hope. The prophet Isaiah sums it up perfectly: “O Lord, you are my God; I will exalt you and praise your name, for in perfect faithfulness you have done marvelous things, things planned long ago.”(Isaiah 25:1)

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