I just finished the chapters on fear and wow- they were so powerful!! It is crazy because I actually remember Steven Furtick speaking at Saddleback Church a little over a year ago and his message was on the same thing I just read! I love when God does that- obviously, He does not want me to miss this truth!! Fear is one of Satan’s tactics- putting fear into our minds that detour us off the path God wants us to take. Steven says in his book, “The Enemy can’t do a thing to diminish God’s promises so instead he lures you into places where your perspective of God’s promises will be diminished.” He talks about the story of Elijah and how his fear caused him to run away. Interestingly enough, God has just done a mighty miracle through Elijah by sending fire down onto a sacrifice and proving God’s power to the prophets of Baal. However, soon after he is now running for his life in fear of the threats of one woman. You think that after seeing that miracle from God that Elijah would be invincible and fearless.
I love the next part of the story. God does not reprimand Elijah for his little faith after just witnessing God’s mighty power, instead we see God meeting Elijah’s needs by caring for him. He tells him to get up and eat and even provides him with food. I think it is referring to both physical nourishment as well as spiritual nourishment. Ladies, we need to be intentional and feed ourselves daily with God’s word. I love what Steven says, “We can never hope to crash the chatterbox until the signal (God’s Word) becomes louder in our lives that the incessant noise around us that clamors for our attention and depletes our courage.”
So after he is nourished, God tells him to go out and stand on the mountain so He could pass by. Again, love this part of the story and how God communicates to Elijah. There is a mighty wind, an earthquake, a fire but that is not how God chose to communicate with Elijah. Then, it says, there was a gentle whisper and God said, “What are you doing here, Elijah?” You may ask yourself why a whisper? Why did God not talk to him in the fire, the earthquake, or the wind. I love that Steven says, “He whispers because He’s close.” Wow- we have a God who is close and cares. One of my favorite verses is “God is close to the brokenhearted.” Psalms 34:18 Whatever you are going through: divorce, depression, infertility, loss of a loved one…. God is close to you! I don’t know why we have to experience these hard times but I do not that God is close to us during them and wants to support and comfort you!
Towards the end of the chapter, the book says that we need to train our mind to know the difference between the Enemy’s threats and God’s whispers. He then gives a comparison of the two:
“The Enemy’s threats are embedded in lies. God’s whispers are rooted in truth.
The Enemy’s threats are designed to paralyze. God’s whispers are empowered to mobilize.
The Enemy’s threats condemn vaguely. God’s whispers instruct specifically.
The Enemy’s threats are aimed to take you out. God’s whispers speak a better Word to keep you in and move your forward.”
Ladies, don’t let the enemy take you out. He is trying to use our fears to paralyze us from our purpose. I know one of my biggest fears was people finding out I was getting divorced and the judgment from it. Satan was trying to make me think I could not be used; however, this is a lie. The truth is that God can still use me even in my brokenness. We need to find a way to combat Satan’s lies with God’s truth. I know for me, I need to be reading God’s word consistently and putting these truths in my heart so I am ready when the enemy attacks.
I love how God’s Word changes our perspective and helps us move forward. Elijah did not stay in his place of fear but instead goes back and follows God’s instructions. Here is a final quote to leave you with, “Don’t let a battle that you are afraid to fight keep you from a victory that already won.”