Fear and Faith Cannot Occupy the Same Place
The product package and design meeting had been cancelled. The marketing staff was notified there had been another shooting. The interstate was a parking lot. Traffic jams and roadblocks were a daily routine. No one felt safe to travel in or around the area while the sniper was still free to kill at will. They promised to do all they could to catch the culprit, but there was no relief in sight. 'What were we going to do?' This scenario read like a story out of a detective novel that would have sold a million copies. Unfortunately, this was not a fantasy. We were experiencing a tragic event.
We lived in a city that was not alien to violence. Domestic upheaval, drug wars, school vandalism, parent and child tragedies'all of these were all too familiar to our lifestyle. But random violence from an unknown assailant day after day, this was new. This was mind blowing. This was fear. How could we operate with 'business as usual' when we were awakened daily feeling no one was safe, and everyone was the target.
Our employees, families and friends were openly confessing they were afraid to perform simple 'daily living' tasks like going to the store, mowing the lawn, or catching the bus much less going to work. The local news media had been inundated with helplessness, frustration, sorrow and pain. In addition, our police security had confirmed our worse concerns. They had no idea how to fight the battle and guarantee our safety. Daily we faced the question what were we to do now? People expressed fear. 'But God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power and love and of a sound mind' (II Timothy 1:7 KJV).
We must continue to remind ourselves that we are living in a time when we must know that we know who we are and whose we are. The enemy, working through men, has threatened to destroy our economy and abolish our freedoms. If we continue with 'carnal' thinking, we will continue to respond to tragic situations with our natural eyes only. We will fall in the enemy's hands and become slaves to follow their dictate and commands. We will continue to close schools, shut down businesses, avoid daily routines and hide in our homes awaiting the final blow. If we maintain carnal thinking, we will keep our youth from quality education, shut libraries, museums and other public facilities. If we respond to tragedy carnally, we will begin to trade our freedom for a hostage lifestyle and begin living like captives in our own land.
Faith is now. It is time for us to address our natural life challenges using spirit-based guidelines. 'For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places'. (Ephesians 6:12 KJV)
We must acknowledge the real enemy when experiencing violence related battles, and take unto ourselves the 'whole armor of God' so that we may be able to withstand 'in the evil day'. And, after having done all in the natural, stand in prayer 'spiritually.' This is our charge as parents, businesspeople, law enforcers and politicians.
After all our efforts of closing the highways, arriving on the scene with guns blazing, pulling over mini vans and trucks, and shutting down schools and businesses has been exhausted, we must pray then stand. 'Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one - - and pray in the spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests.' (Ephesians 6:14-18, NIV)
As business people, we tend to get so busy that we forget that we are 'spirit-filled'. Satan's plan is for us to maintain our busy state, so that we give little or no time to prayer which is our most effective, formidable weapon against fear. Prayer, in faith, is our protection against all manner of evil that may present itself in any form. Prayer works for those who believe in their salvation in Christ Jesus, walk in the power of God, and call out His name in time of trouble.
Now is not the time for doubt. Now is not the time for hesitation. Now is not the time to succumb to the taunts and threats of the evil that surrounds us like a roaring lion about to devour its prey. Faith is now. By seeking the mercy of God in all we do, we activate the shield of protection against the warfare that has been waged against us. We can then continue to run our businesses, plan and attend meetings, vote for our leaders, supervise our employees, send our children to school, and enjoy the freedoms of this country provided for us these many years.
The Christian walk is daily. Sometimes it demands that we actively and regularly chart the appropriate course of action we will take. There is no variety of 'menu' selections. There is only one main course of action and that is obedience to God's Word. No matter what challenge is presented, our response cannot be found in the 'gray' area of doubt and fear. Our only response comes from the knowledge that we are actively walking in Faith now.
In God We Trust,' is written on the currency we exchange doing business everyday. Now, more than ever, we need to read and believe in its message, remove fear from its dwelling place in our hearts and replace it with faith. We need to step out on faith, through prayer, and believe in our hearts that on command by our prayers the evil that has been loosed in the heavenlies to reign terror upon this land has been bound and banished. We will, by the power of our faith in the almighty God, continue our normal business dealings with no fear because we know that we are the children of the King of kings, Lord of lords, the Most High God. Our Father, 'who art in heaven' will provide protection for His children. All we need do is seek Him, call Him by name, and then be still and know that He is God.
Theresa V. Wilson, M.Ed. is a freelance writer and owner of a home based business dedicated to providing products and resources for grieving families and caregivers facing health recovery and crisis related issues.