Saturday, November 5, 2011

It's a Twister!

Matthew 14:27:
But, immediately Jesus spoke to them and said, "Take heart, it is I; do not be afraid.

I watched the movie, The Wizard of Oz, for the first time when I was three. Yes, even my mother admits to this day that "I was too young" and "she didn't know what she was thinking" when she allowed me to view it. The film certainly has had an impact on me, but not in the way you might imagine.

Shortly after seeing the movie, the nightmares begin. They aren't about wicked witches or flying monkeys or lions and tigers and bears. Oh, my, no! They involve something horrendously real and terribly violent.

Tornadoes!

I wake up screaming and crying in the middle of the night. Mom or Dad rush into my bedroom to comfort me. More often than not, I end up crawling in bed with them, assured this would ward off any more bad dreams that night.

The tornadoes are always chasing me, pursuing me, their black, tortuous funnels dipping and bowing as they approach. Their raging winds roar in my ears. My heart pounds wildly as it closes in, threatening to rip me off my feet and carry me, like poor Dorothy, away from my home. Just before this happens, I always wake up.

Trembling, sweating, weeping. Scared to death.

The nightmares follow me through my teen years and on into young adulthood. Thankfully, they lessen in frequency, but are still disturbing, distressing . . .

Enter the day I meet Jesus. Really meet Him for the first time. My faith walk with the Lord begins . . .

And, the nightmares? They virtually end. If and when they occur today, I am always watching the tornadoes spinning and twisting harmlessly from afar. They are always in retreat.

My fears can no longer chase me.

God chased them away.
~
How has your faith in the Lord calmed your fears?

Let us pray: We know, Father, that fear is the opposite of faith. Help us to take heart and give all our fears over to you. In your love and mercy, we need never be afraid. Amen.

Today, I am thankful for all four of my children.

Readings:
Psalms 75, 76 or 23, 27
Ezra 9:1-15
Revelation 17:1-14
Matthew 14:22-36

14 comments:

  1. Yes, fear is the absence of faith. Imagine the fear of being created in a universe where nothing is known, nothing is certain, one where our eventual well-being is not even in the hands of chance, but only in the hands of the unknown. That is the backdrop for the life of the atheist. And in the spirit of the atheist exists an Iron Curtain, forever separating the atheist from even the prospect of God. From such a spiritual place, only fear could exist. But the atheist hides from the fear be erecting another spiritual wall, one which effectively masks fear with indifference. But that indifference is a mind game, mind over spirit. There is no way that one can be truly indifferent to one's ultimate spiritual destination.

    Only knowledge of God, faith in God and the goodness of God, can break down these spiritual walls, displacing the indifference from fear with faith in the love of God. But the love of God does not proceed where it is not invited. And THAT is the only barrier separating the atheist from the love of God. Just an invitation. In most, that won't happen. That is because the spirit which controls whether God is issued an invitation has given the key to that door to another whose life depends upon keeping it.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Beautifully expressed, Hank! You've definitely given the readers, and this writer, food for thought.
    Thanks for stopping by today. :)

    Blessings!

    ReplyDelete
  3. How interesting, Martha. I watched it when I was seven and insisted that I be taken home halfway through the movie! Not sure whether it was the movie or the fact that my Mum took us to it to distract us because Dad left for the that day. Either way I didn't seem to like it!
    Love your reflection though :)

    ReplyDelete
  4. Thank you, Corinne and Ann, for stopping by today!
    @Corinne - ironically, the movie turned out to be one of my favorites (once I got past the tornado part). So glad you enjoyed today's devotion. :)
    @Ann - Wow! Happy to know you thought this was awesome!
    Blessings to you both!

    ReplyDelete
  5. I no longer fear the future. I'm with Hank; in some cases, fear is the absence of faith - not always (there are God-given fears that are for our good).

    ReplyDelete
  6. You could publish this one elsewhere ;-)

    ReplyDelete
  7. Hi, Debra! Thanks for stopping by today!

    Yes, I agree, there are some fears which are necessary for our survival; good ol' fight or flight. Unfortunately, our complex brains find ways to heighten healthy fears (yes, tornadoes are dangerous) into unhealthy dimensions.

    Oh, yes, and I get it . . .:)

    Blessings, my friend!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Luke 12:32
    “Do not fear, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom."

    John 14:26-27

    26 But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you. 27 Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid."

    Philippians 4:4-9

    4 Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice!
    5 Let your gentleness be known to all men. The Lord is at hand.
    6 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; 7 and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

    8 Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things. 9 The things which you learned and received and heard and saw in me, these do, and the God of peace will be with you."

    ReplyDelete
  9. I remember when I was younger, before I was saved I used to be falling and screaming...and no sound coming out of my mouth! That was probably what the other place is like! But life changed, on Jesus came into my life. Thank God He chose to save me! I love the Lord with all my heart soul and might! Hank - real men love Jesus, brother!! :-)

    So do real women like you, Martha!! Amen

    ReplyDelete
  10. Hi, Galer, Janu, and Bernie! Thanks so much for stopping by!
    @Galer - wonderful, comforting verses . . . thank you for sharing these.
    @Janu - Thank you for the compliment!
    @Bernie - Wow! What a parallel! Our lives change dramatically when the Lord enters in. :)

    Blessings to all!

    ReplyDelete
  11. My whole life I've had recurring tornado dreams. In my dream it's usually a cluster of three to five tornados bearing down on me. Strange!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Just got goosebumps . . .

    Is it, and this may sound presumptuous, because in seeking the most of God and His goodness that we are more desired by the devil? Weird, but that thought just surfaced and I wrote what came. Satan would want to teach us to fear, to forget our faith, to trust in worldly promises, like basements and storm shelters and bathtubs (yeah, the last one is the last place I'd be in for safety!).

    He wants to place storms in our lives. We know that only God can calm them.

    Thank you for stopping by, Bill!

    Blessings always!

    ReplyDelete

Happy Birthday, Virginia Rose!

Psalm 139:14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. Seven years ...