I was soaking up some rays yesterday afternoon in my front yard, trying to combat the perpetual Snow-Whiteness of my skin. As I lay there enjoying the breeze and the beautiful spring flowers, suddenly the peace was interrupted by the eruption of very loud, relatively close, semi-automatic gunfire. After a few shots I realized that it was just a neighbor doing some target practice. I was in no danger, but my heart skipped a beat nonetheless.
Trevor and I are pro-2nd Amendment people all the way, but I understand that some people who possess deadly weapons will use them with evil intentions. I also understand that countless dangers exist in this fallen world. I have known people who were taken from this world in car crashes, from diseases, in terrible, freak accidents, or at the hands of violent criminals.
I watched some of the documentaries of the 70th anniversary of D-Day this weekend. Remembering the utter evil of Hitler’s reign and the millions of lives that were lost during that time drives this point home even more. The older I get, the more I understand how fragile life is and how easily it can be snuffed out. I realize that I’m never truly safe here.
It’s a really good thing, then, that this is not my home. Not ultimately, anyway. I’m just passing through on my way to heaven. And Jesus is getting my eternal home ready for me even now.
Instead of somber thoughts, I like to focus on God as my Protector. I can choose to trust Him in every situation, every day, knowing that He is all-powerful and more than able to keep me from danger and sickness and harm. Certainly God uses even what we deem bad situations to work good in our lives, but sometimes the devil just wants to hurt us. I believe God thwarts untold attempts by the enemy to inflict injury or heartache on His children.
Consider these verses:
2 Thessalonians 3:3: “But the Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen and protect you from the evil one.”
2 Samuel 22:3-4: “My God is my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and the horn of my salvation. He is my stronghold, my refuge, my savior—from violent men you save me. I call to the LORD, who is worthy of praise, and I am saved from my enemies.”
Isaiah 41:10: “So do not fear, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”
Isaiah 54:17: “‘No weapon forged against you will prevail, and you will refute every tongue that accuses you. This is the heritage of the servants of the LORD and this is their vindication from me,’ declares the LORD.”
Psalm 46:1: “God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.”
Psalm 91:1-2: “He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the LORD, ‘He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.'”
2 Timothy 4:18: “The Lord will rescue me from every evil attack and bring me safely to his heavenly kingdom. To him be glory for ever and ever. Amen.
Get the idea?
Our Heavenly Father created us, chose us, loves us. He protects us day after day from harm that we can’t even imagine. But because we all must leave this world at one time or another, eventually our earthly bodies will cease to work and we will cross over into eternity. Oh, what a glorious day that will be, when no longer can anyone or anything hurt us or harm us. There will be no more evil, persecution, danger, or peril. Everything will be made right, just as God intended earth to be, originally. Everything will be perfect.
Do you look forward to that day as much as I do? Do you long for Jesus to return to earth to take His church to heaven with Him? The darker the days become here, the more I want to be with my Father in heaven. But until that time, there’s much work to do here to share the Good News with the world.
Come, Lord Jesus. (Rev. 22:20)