We know this world is dangerous, even frightening at times. The news tells us of people with no regard for human life, even their own, in fits of rage murdering innocent men, women, and children. Many of these murders are done for the sake of revenge or some perceived slight by the victim. Sometimes they are committed in the heat of anger and passion and other times they are coldly premeditated and planned.
Deadly automobile accidents are far too common and sometimes we wonder who is next. Planes crash, boats sink, trains run off their tracks. Every day people go to their job where they earn their living but instead of going home at the end of the day, they are carried to the morgue. Accidents also strike with alarming frequency every year in the home or close by where we normally feel safe. We’ve all heard about folks dying because the surgeon or the pharmacist slipped up. Buildings and bridges fall on us, or out from under us claiming the lives of everyday innocent folks. Floods, hurricanes, tornadoes, fires, and earthquakes all add to the often repressed knowledge that we live in a world that is filled with mishap and mayhem.
In this twenty-first century we increasingly see terrorists proliferating around the world who want to blow us to pieces along with themselves and hasten our demise both individually and as a nation. Terrorists both foreign and domestic who indiscriminately kill strangers, sometimes dozens at a time often end up dying with their targeted victims.
If someone from a hundred years ago stepped into our world today they would probably be afraid to get out of bed, but statistics show they might not be safe there either. The fact is this world is not a safe place and getting worse as time passes. Our world situation creates stress which can become chronic. Medical reports and citizen feedback show it is taking it’s toll on people’s mental and physical health. Some are leaving the big city and moving to the countryside only to discover it has it’s own set of hazards.
Every time there is another major catastrophe many families think of finding a peaceful place where they hope to escape the mayhem and madness. In this modern age of instant communication and jet travel it is difficult if not impossible to find a place here in this world that is peaceful for more than a fleeting moment. This entire planet is subject to one or more forces of nature such as storms, floods, and earthquake, even volcano eruptions. Where man is there will be crime and we can expect some may be violent at any time. So as we cover more and more of the earth and the weather and other natural forces seem to be in turmoil we see it is increasingly difficult to find a place of peace and safety.
Relentless noise and violence can get us depressed, discouraged, even frightened. Children are especially vulnerable and look to their parents to reassure and protect them. Add a family split such as a divorce to the turmoil and is it any wonder many children have gone over into drugs, alcohol, sex, and crime? They need peace and safety as much if not more than adults do and sadly too many turn to the seeming comfort they so easily find on the dark side in this sin sick and dangerous world.
There is hope and there is peace and safety, but it does not come from drugs or alcohol. It cannot be found in others in this world, neither is it found in a place. Others will disappoint us sooner or later, even the best of persons, and places we think peaceful are subject to change at any moment.
Friends. true, lasting, and meaningful peace and safety are found only in Jesus Christ. For the born again Christian or the sinner willing to repent and submit their life to God, they can have both peace and safety in this life and the next. All Christians should be seeking the solace and protection of God daily, never forgetting that He alone is our hope and our refuge. He desires to cheer us, comfort us, strengthen us, and see us through any valley if we will trust and look to Him in faith. Our
feelings are not a reliable measure but the promises of God are and that is where our hope and trust must dwell no matter how things appear to us.
Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted within me? hope in God: for I shall yet praise him, who is the health of my countenance, and my God. ~ Psalms 43:5
When Jesus knew His time to be crucified was near He told us, by way of His disciples that were with Him;
Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid. ~John 14:27
Having lived for over thirty years in a body of flesh and blood, Jesus knew the tendency of the flesh to fear. He had also learned first-hand just how fleeting and shallow the worlds’ peace could be, no matter how well intentioned. He experienced the uncertainty, trials, temptations, and everything that we do. Therefore He understands what we need and has promised to meet the needs of those who are His.
And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. ~ Philippians 4:7
We would do well to remember that not all things are as they appear. A loved one may die unexpectedly in a tragic accident and it appears God has failed to protect them. Be not hasty or foolish dear friend, for we know not what the Lord may have done in those final moments. The Christian loved one we lost may have never felt even one blow, but instead may have been wrapped peacefully in the arms of God in those final moments. We don’t always know what God does do, but we know He cares for His children.
Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of his saints. ~ Psalms 116:15
One of the sixteenth century martyrs who was burned alive at the stake for his unwavering Christian faith comes to mind as an example of what God can do. Through a prearranged signal he indicated to fellow believers that the fire was tolerable and that he was not in agony. This message was conveyed while his body was literally melting in the flames, and his fingers falling off!1
Chapter three of the book of Daniel tells us what happened to Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego who were thrown into a furnace so hot it killed those who threw them in. Yet, because of their faith in the God of the Bible, He protected them from the fire and left not even the smell of smoke on them or their clothing. Not only did God protect them, but the Bible tells us that there were seen four men walking in the furnace and the “form of the fourth is like the Son of God.” So not only does the Lord protect us, He goes with His children who honor and obey Him!
When the devil stirs up trouble or turmoil, when this world comes at us, we have a shield if we will but trust the Lord and look to Him. We cannot over state the fact that peace and safety can be found in no
place, on this earth, but it abounds in the living Son of God, Jesus Christ. When troubles and cares threaten to disturb your heart and mind, threatens to dampen your joy and make you feel unsafe, insecure and frightened, then is a good time to talk to the Lord in prayer. So be not cast down my friend, be not of a sad countenance with fear and despair, but lift thy face to Heaven and praise Him who is worthy today and every day. He will meet you there in prayer and bring you the refreshing you need to continue to face this world and its’ calamities.
Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you. ~ 1 Peter 5:7
When the devil stirs up trouble or turmoil, when this world comes at us, we have a shield if we will but trust the Lord and look to Him.
When you feel oppressed and this world seems to be pressing in ever closer pick up your King James Bible and read Psalm 91 out loud. Whether at home or in a jail cell, walk about while you read, and see if you can’t feel the strength flowing into your bones. The devil and his demons will flee also for they hate to hear the Word of God wherein is power like no other power.
The name of the LORD is a strong tower: the righteous runneth into it, and is safe. ~ Proverbs 18:10
Yes this world is in a mess and daily getting worse. Innocent folks are hurt and killed every day but the children of God have a protector and a place of refuge where all is peaceful and safe. This world is not the home of the Christian, we are simply passing through and sooner or later God will call us to be with Him forever so yes, one day we will all die but that does not mean we have not been protected.
And I say unto you my friends, Be not afraid of them that kill the body, and after that have no more that they can do. ~ Luke 12:4
As Christians, may we never forget that Jesus is our safety and our safe place.
1. Foxe’s Book of Martyrs by John Foxe first published in 1563. Folks, I highly recommend that every Christian read this book! You need to know the foundations of your faith, who did what, when and where. It will also magnify God in your heart more than you can know. We have made it available with our comments and a page about the author. The book is in PDF format.