Spiritual Depression – Fear Of The Future

We are all born different, aren’t we. It is one way we see the wondrous workings of God; all made differently yet able to be so unified in belief, thought, action, heart, and mind. When we think of the future, some are excited, some are worried, some are paralysed with fear, some are confused, so, what do we do?

Importantly, we need to distinguish between thinking about the future well, and worrying about the future unnecessarily. Lloyd-Jones writes that there is a difference between ‘legitimate forethought and paralysing forethought‘. One allows a farmer to plow the field and sow his seed, the other can lead us to a paralysed present because of what-if worries. 

We have talked before about leaving the past in the past, but also just as true is worrying about a future we cannot control. Many times in Scripture we see this idea of ‘think about today, today, and let tomorrow be tomorrow‘ (Matthew 6.25-34 for example). 

When fear of the future strikes us, which it inevitably does despite the varied makeups of our character including those who seem to be unruffled and steadfastly sure, where do we look?

“…God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.”

2 Timothy 1.7

The Spirit of power is that which raised Jesus from the dead (Romans 8.11), and this power now indwells you as a fully regenerate born-again believer. Now, this is not to say you can go around resurrecting people, but, this needs to be a constant reminder that we give ourselves – the Holy Spirit lives in me, God has given me a spirit not of fear, but of power.

When we are tempted to worry about an unknown future, we must commit our unknown future to a known God as Corrie Ten Boom said. The Spirit of love allows us to know that we are loved by God Most High, that we take the focus off self-love, self-care, self-protection and rest in the fact that the Spirit of love surrounds us, cares for us, and will protect us even from ourselves.

The Spirit of self-control gives us, seemingly miraculously for some, the ability to soak in God’s Word, to understand the timeless truths therein, and to internalise this so deeply that when troubles come, when trials cross our paths, we have a mind that is so saturated with the Word and the truths of God that we can maintain control and not veer off into unnecessary future worry.   

“…God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.”

2 Timothy 1.7

Lloyd-Jones closes the discussion on future fears like this,

…to those who are particularly prone to spiritual depression through…fear of the future, I say in the Name of God…talk to yourself, remind yourself of what is true…remind yourself of who you are and what you are, and of what Spirit is within you…and you will be able to go steadily forward, fearing nothing, living in the present, ready for the future, with one desire only, to glorify Him who gave His all for you.

Breathe On Us

Today for our music devotional, Breath On Us, by Calvary Creative.

Meet me in the solitary

Meet me in the ordinary

Meet me in the sanctuary

Make my heart your home

How often we fall into the trap of thinking that our weekly attendance at a worship service is the only place we will encounter God that week. Acts 7.48-50 and 17.24 tell us clearly that God does not live, or His presence is not localised, to one particular place. So, He is with us in the solitary, He is with us in the ordinary humdrum of everyday life, and He is with us in the sanctuary of His church as we assemble together to worship Him. 

I want the fullness of your love

I want the treasure of your peace

I want the fullness of your love

Surrounding me

What a wonderful prayer this would be for us when we wake in the morning – Father, I want the fullness of your love, and the treasure of your peace to surround me today. God’s Word to us tells us that there is nowhere we can go to escape His presence, His good, loving, peace-brining presence (Psalm 139.7, 1 Kings 8.27, Jeremiah 23.24).

Spirit of God

Breathe on us

Spirit of God

Breath on us

Spirit of God

Fall on us

The encounter that the disciples had with the Holy Spirit in Acts 2 was unique and was so uniquely powerful that the church as we know it was birthed then and there, but, is it a bad thing to pray and ask God for a fresh filling of His Spirit today? Is it wrong to earnestly pray for the same Spirit that ministered to Jesus in the wilderness, the same Spirit that was present at creation, the same Spirit that allowed scared, dejected, timid men become powerful preachers of the Good News, is it wrong to pray for the same Spirit that raised Jesus from the dead to indwell us and fill us fresh each day? Absolutely not!

Point to ponder – 

Romans 8.11

If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you.

Prayer – Father, we want the fullness of your love, the treasure of your peace, and the same Spirit that raised Jesus from the dead to surround us today and every day. Give life to our mortal bodies, Lord, so that we in turn can use them for your glory. Amen.