An Anchor you can hold onto in the New Year, Is God truly Good?

As 2022 comes to a close I look back at the sorrows, the joys, and the triumphs. Then I look at the continued circumstances that have so many people struggling in their faith or just in their initial acceptance of who God really is. The question that keeps coming up in every conversation, in every look, and in every part of my being…is God truly good? Have you been truly faithful all my life, have you always looked out for me through this year? The Holy Sprit presented it to me in the form of a letter and a reply. A reply found in Gods word through the verses below. I pray that no matter how this year ended, and how the new one begins you can anchor yourself in the knowledge that God is good and only wants good for you! Carry this truth with you throughout this new year, and behold the joy that can spring from it!

Dear Lord,

I need your help with something. I need to understand. I am in a state of sorrow and confusion and nothing makes sense to me. Everything I thought you were, everything I thought you would do, and even your character has been brought into question within my mind. You are supposed to be a good God. The state that I am in has found me broken. Nothing makes sense to me anymore. Everything I have believed in, everything I trusted in, and everything I could count on has fallen around me. I am standing so vulnerable, scared, and freshly bruised. How could you? How could you let bad things happen to me? How could you turn your back on me? I thought you would never leave me and protect me. Keep me safe, and supply my needs. Now none of that seems true to me. How can this be?

Dear Child of Mine,

I am so sorry you are struggling. If I could take every pain, every wrong that has been done to you and every bruise unto myself I would; but if I did, I would be doing you a disservice. So, let me explain it this way. What does it mean to be good? To be good means to do without thought of personal gain. As God, I am sworn to be good at all cost, to let no evil come from me. As God I am also able to see what is to come. So, what I think you are really saying is, “Why Lord, if you know bad is coming and its going to hurt me, why would you let it happen? Why don’t you intervene?” This my Dear Child is my reply.

As my child I can see everything that lies ahead, and what the outcome will be. I see if you go down a specific path, what choices you will make, and what will come of it. As your Lord I am sworn to do what is best for you. In that comes tough choices. Choices to let hard things come, for you to go through rough times, emotional times. But all of this comes with the promise that good will come from it and only for your good. You see I am protecting you, just not like you think I should. I am there with you every step of the way leading you, but only down the paths where the outcome will be for your good. With the good outcomes doesn’t promise there will be no sorrow, pain, or heartbreak. I know from where you are standing that this situation seems impossible. The emotions of sorrow and grief and pain are so overwhelming. My promise to you is to do good by you, and what is best for you! If I can see that this sorrow you are going through will grow and make you stronger. What kind of God would I be to take that away? What happens the next time something this hard comes along, and I take that away too? What service am I granting you, what good am I doing for you if I never help and teach you to get through anything, but take it all away? This world is a sinful place and therefore you will have to face many trials, hurts, and sorrows. Yet, did you know that I have also given way to have joy within those trials, happiness within those hurts, and hope with sorrow? So, this I will leave with you. A promise. I promise that all things work for the good to those who love the Lord. That with trials you have the opportunity to grow. To grow in knowledge of me, in faith, in fruits, and in service. The promise of strength, wisdom, perseverance, peace, joy, and victory over every battle can be yours. I promise you will be greater than when you first began this journey with me, and an active participant in the overcoming each and every battle as  well as your doubt that I, God am truly good and want only good for you! You see, to let no evil come from me, I cannot withhold any circumstance that ultimately can bring about what it truly best for you. You cannot see it, but I need you to trust me dear child, that I can and I will be with you every step of the way until you can see the good that comes from it and that I am being true to who I say I am!  

No matter what has past, what is going on now, or what is to come. I pray this next year that you are truly able to grasp and hold the anchor that God is truly good. He wants only what is best for you! His promises to take all that has happened and make them into good is in progress, he just needs you to feed it with your trust and hold tight to your faith!

James 1:13 Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man:

Ecclesiastes 9:1-2 For all this I considered in my heart even to declare all this, that the righteous, and the wise, and their works, are in the hand of God: no man knoweth either love or hatred by all that is before them. All things come alike to all: there is one event to the righteous, and to the wicked; to the good and to the clean, and to the unclean; to him that sacrificeth, and to him that sacrificeth not: as is the good, so is the sinner; and he that sweareth, as he that feareth an oath.

2 Peter 1:1-9 Simon Peter, a servant and an apostle of Jesus Christ, to them that have obtained like precious faith with us through the righteousness of God and our Saviour Jesus Christ: Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord, According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue: Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity. For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and hath forgotten that he was purged from his old sins.


Thou shall not Fear?

As a person dealing with mental health issues, I often find teachings of the bible as a “you should do this and you should do that” or else you’re not a Christian. When I am faced with should and should nots, I feel a pressure to conform or else. Often times I find that preachers and teachers use a fear approach to get those to convert to God’s ways. In my struggle with depression and anxiety the people that have used fear are all about control. I am not saying that those who use fear don’t have the right motives behind what they are doing, but what I think is important to know is when you are dealing with people who suffer with constant fear already, adding more fear only alienates you more from being able to help them.

The Bible has 365 references that say, “do not fear”. One for each day of the year. Yet, the Bible also says to, “fear the Lord”. At first, I found this to be contradictor to each other. What is it that God is really trying to say? If you want my honesty, here it is…fearing God with every decision I make and every turn that I take has often led me to become a pile of shaking, nausea, don’t want to leave the house, and don’t want any responsibility in making any decisions kind of mess. Because the truth is, I do fear the Lord. I fear if I don’t act a certain way, I will lose my witness. If I don’t behave a certain way, God will take me out of this world and define me as useless. I fear if I teach and misquote anything, then I am wrong and God will be angry and will punish me with some life altering event to teach me a lesson. I fear if I can’t use my talents, God will take them away from me. I fear if I am not a good enough mother, wife, daughter, Christian, (virtuous women) I will suffer great lose and heartache and go to hell. These are things I have heard in sermons all my life and hear in everyday conversations about people who have suffering on a daily basis. It is all their fault because they have not feared and listened. They should have done this or should have done that. Another great truth is I cannot live this way and leave my house, let alone my bedroom. The constant fear and pressure to conform and act a particular way is not a reality I can or want to live in. So, how do I move forward?

First, I gain new ground, new perspective. When I read and study my Bible fear is not a tactic, I believe, God wants us to use to control others or ourselves. To control how we think, how fast we move toward a decision, how we should operate our daily lives. This I am most certain of, because if this was how God wanted my life to be controlled then it would come with great joy and happiness, because I know that when I am in God’s will, then I am experiencing true joy in my life. If I am not experiencing that joy and happiness then what I am doing and how I am processing is not in God’s will. So, what is the opposite of fear? LOVE! That is right, love is the opposite of fear. Not faith, not performance, not a should and should not list, but love.

1 John 4:8 “He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.”

 1 John 4:18 “There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love.”

I encourage you to go read the whole chapter of 1 John 4, and see how important love is to God. I believe that it is the most important thing to God. But these two verses stuck out to me. You see if God is love, and perfect love casteth out fear, then we can know that God does not desire us to live in fear of Him, but in awe of His love! God does not want us to fear what this life holds for use, because His love is stronger than anything else we may experience or go through. Ya’ll love is the key!

God create you! He loves you as you are. There are not stipulations to His love. It is free and all we have to do is accept it and believe it. Think about the love you have for someone. I think of the love I have for my children. There is not a battle I would not walk through, a sickness I would not take from them, time I would not give up to spend with them, sacrifices I would not make to let them know how much I love them. Now multiply that by 100. This is what God’s love would do for you. It will sacrifice his only son to be crucified for your wrong doings, it will never leave you nor forsake you no matter what, he will never hide from you, he will never forget you. Just like Elisha he will send out an army to rescue you from your darkest night. There is no distance He will not come to help you. God’s love is a love we cannot comprehend and will never find in this world.

I have seen the quote on pictures and key chains and such that say “faith over fear”, or “let your faith be bigger than your fear” and to be honest this makes my blood boil a little. Because it insinuates that if we only have enough faith then we would not be experiencing fear. It gives blame, where blame is not needed. All the amount of faith required for us to have is a mustard seed. The truth is we will experience fear in our life the same as we will experience anger, sadness, and happiness. It is part of our world that we live in and this world is not a fear free environment. What we can have hope in is that love is bigger than any fear we have. God’s love for us, his sacrifice of his only son, puts love at the top of the leader board in success. Love does not give us a do and do not list, or a should and should not list or else. Love does not say if only you do this or that then you deserve to be loved. Love is a free gift. A free gift we get from God and a free gift we give to others. So today go out and love that person who is struggling with mental health issues. Love yourself for the struggle you are facing. Let God’s love carry you through your moments of fear. Let your Love and God’s love for you be bigger than your fear! Love takes time and patience. The result, unlike fear, is a long-lasting result that produces joy. Most importantly hope! To fear God does not mean to be scared of Him and His power. To fear God is to be in awe of Him and the Love He has for us!

I Will Rescue You

by Lauren Daigle