The first chapter was particularly convicting to me as I sat and stewed about going back to MD Anderson in a few weeks. I'm already dreading the experience in a big way. But why? Because of fear. Fear that something that I don't want to know about will show up. Fear of cancer.
Why is this an issue that I can't seem to fully put to rest? Why can't I manage to get total freedom from these horrendous fears? I know. Fear involves torment and lies and Satan is a master tormenter and the author of lies.
James 1:6b-8 says, "Be sure that your faith is in God alone. Do not waver, for a person with divided loyalty is as unsettled as a wave of the sea that is blown and tossed by the wind. Such people should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. Their loyalty is divided between God and the world, and they are unstable in everything they do."
Satan inhabits the earth. It is is his playground. His scene. And, he moves about freely, destroying all that is in his path. He will always tempt us with fear. I mean, I feel better than I have in months, and I have no reason to fear bad news, yet I am tempted to fear. John 4:18 says, "There is no fear in love. Perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with torment. The person who lives in fear does not have perfect love."
God is love. In fact, He is the only perfect love. When I choose to fear, I choose to reject God. That's sin, and gives birth to death, according to James 1:15.
On the other hand, when I choose Christ, who never changes nor casts a shadow, I gain life through His Word.
For me, this is a literal understanding of His truth. I literally believe that my faith in Christ is the determiner of my destiny. Not because of anything I can accomplish, but because God requires that we trust Him. Having true faith in a fallen world of pessimism isn't easy, but it's what God requires. He wants to know we're not just fair-weather fans.