Pearls of Grace - January 2

January 2

Pray or Panic

"And he shall say to them, ‘Hear, O Israel, you are approaching the battle against your enemies today. Do not be fainthearted. Do not be afraid, or panic, or tremble before them."

Deuteronomy 20:3

When we find ourselves in a difficult place, even if we believe with all of the faith one can have proclaiming God makes no mistakes, and that He is on the throne, panic will always be a readily available response. We are brought to difficult places in our lives often times to be given the opportunity to realize that the Lord either placed us there Himself, allowed us to be there for reasons that may be obvious or for reasons reserved for God’s understanding only. Occasionally Heaven affords us with a rare gift, a priceless encounter with God Himself, when He leads us into the very heart of an impossible passage: Moments unmistakably orchestrated by the hand of providence.

Even though we may find ourselves in an impossible situation, we can confidently know that we will be there with a God who does the impossible. He precedes us, pouring out all that we need before we even arrive so that when we do we are walking right into His presence, His arms and mighty provision. We can know with all the confidence of Heaven that God will never put His children in a place where His presence cannot or will not sustain them. In Genesis 35:3, Jacob recounts the faithfulness of God saying…"I will make an altar there to God, who answered me in the day of my distress, and has been with me wherever I have gone." Jacob could attest to God’s provision because in the day of his distress God answered him. He had a choice to make in the day of his distress, in the day of his impossible passage; pray or panic. We can understand from the text that because God answered Jacob, he must have cried out to Him for help! Before God can answer, we have to call on Him.

The Psalmist wrote, "Then they cried to the LORD in their trouble, and He brought them out of their distresses. He caused the storm to be still, so that the waves of the sea were hushed. Then they were glad because they were quiet, so He guided them to their desired haven." (Psalm 107:28-30) Panic will only yield anxiousness, fear, and inevitably regrets from words spoken, actions taken or decisions made in the chaos of our emotions. Panic is not the friend of faith; the two are not on the same page with God. Panic runs; faith prays. When we choose to cry out to God, speaking words of truth into our hearts and mind of what we know to be real about Him, something miraculous begins to happen; our fear gives way to the authority of our faith commanding our emotions to be still. As our faith rises within us we find ourselves willing and able to wait on God in full assurance, absolute trust and security in His love for us.

Warren Wiersbe said; "A faith that has not been tested cannot be trusted." The longer we walk this journey of faith with God, we will find Him more faithful with each and every new place He brings us to. He lovingly teaches us through every difficulty of life that we can absolutely trust Him even when we don’t understand. He lovingly tries us with the kind intention to increase our faith and prove Himself to us upon the platform that trials present in our life. And when the stage is set, the spotlight is shown, and the onlookers have gathered for the scene that is about to be played out in your life, you have two choices. You can either panic or pray. Anyone can panic. But prayer requires a choice, a choice to trust in a God who has never been tried and found wanting, never discovered to be unable or unfaithful. Prayer is spoken faith which has found its’ heartbeat in a promise, a promise given by God.

Whatever you’re facing today, or may find yourself experiencing in the not so distant future, you can know this ahead of time: God is already there waiting on you. The footprints of His presence may not be unveiled before you but they will unfold step by step as you choose to rest in the One Who is waiting for you to call to Him when you get there. The resources to meet your need for that place and time have been stored up in advance by your Heavenly Father. He plans ahead of time for your arrival ensuring you will have everything you need. He’s waiting on you to pray not panic.


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