Terror Shall Not Touch Me

I have a guest writer today, Nike Chillemi. Nike writes historical suspense, mostly set in World War II era.  She calls herself a crime fictionista. Don’t you just love that title? Wish I’d thought of it first!  She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) and the Edgy Christian Fiction Lovers and you can learn more about her at: http://nikechillemi.wordpress.com/

I think her devotion is timely considering the Boston Marathon bombing.

 

Terror Shall Not Touch Me by Nike Chillemi

3 My God, my rock, in whom I take refuge,
My shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold and my refuge;
My savior, You save me from violence.
4 “I call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised,
And I am saved from my enemies. ~~ taken from 2 Samuel 22:3-4 [NASB]

Many of us face terror in one way or another every day. Even if it’s not directly on our door step, it touches us. We watch helplessly as bombs go off in our cities, our law enforcement officers are targeted for assassination, Christian clergy and the faithful are being imprisoned and tortured in communist and radical Islamist nations.

Let’s not get so overwhelmed by everything that we come from a place of fear. Remember He has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and might. This is where making the time, getting quiet, and getting with the Lord is so vitally important.

When events are stressing us out, and we might be edging toward depression…stop and start praying. Go to Scripture, such as the portion above from 2 Samuel or to the 23rd or 91st Psalms. Read them aloud so you hear the Lord’s words of protection for you. Stand on that and start praying.

There is nothing quite as wonderful and practically useful as a prayer partner, somebody who’s on your spiritual wave length. When worries get too burdensome, go to visit your prayer partner for a cup of coffee and prayer, or phone them and pray. We are told to carry each other’s burdens and to lift each other up.

However, we need to do it…we need to go to God. His grace is sufficient for us. He is the Healer who has the divine healing balm for our soul. He can get rid of stress and the willies. He is the answer and He has the solution for us.

As a writer of classic whodunits with love stories set in the 1940s, I try to incorporate into my storylines the types of relevant situations we face today, in real life. In BURNING HEARTS, formerly an ebook which has just come out in print, Erica and Lorne face a terrifying arsonist/murderer. Ultimately, their faith in God and love for each other help them triumph over this evil.

Amazon Link to Burning Hearts:   http://tiny.cc/eszcww

Thanks, Nike for your devotion and your thoughts.

Only One Sane Choice!

Joshua 1: 9

Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.

 

As I was drifting off to sleep, God nudged me awake with the idea of this devotion. So up from the bed to my computer I went.

It’s been a rough fifteen months for myself and my husband. It actually started on Christmas day 2011 and we’ve had crisis after crisis since then. The details aren’t important—well, actually they’re very important to me but not to you.

The reality is we’re still going through the crises and we don’t know what the future holds. Things are getting better and God is working in our lives, but we still don’t know and won’t know the outcome of all our “issues” for quite some time. In spite of that, we haven’t stopped smiling, stopped enjoying life, or stopped trusting God.

But guess what?

You don’t know what the future holds either.  You may think you do. You may have all sorts of activities, goals, plans and strategies in place for the next year or even five years. The truth is none of us know what will happen in the next minute, hour, day, week……well, you get the idea.

When faced with that truth, there really is only one sane choice.

TRUST GOD.

Trusting God is the only reasonable choice in an unreasonable world.

God will bring a supernatural peace and joy that confuses the world. We don’t have to understand everything. We don’t have to know the future. All we really need to know is that God loves us and will be with us wherever we go.

Trusting God really is the only sane choice!

WHO’S IN CONTROL?

Proverbs 3: 26

for the LORD will be your confidence and will keep your foot from being snared.

 

I’ve been thinking a lot about control lately.

If you ask me, who is in control, I would, of course, give the good Christian answer—GOD . If you ask me who is my provision, I would, of course, give the good Christian answer—GOD. If you ask me who the source if my confidence is, I would give the good Christian answer—GOD.

And I believe that but….

On the other hand, I like to think of myself as self-reliant. I started working the same week I graduated from high school in…cough…stammer…uhm 1973 . I found a job the same week and have worked since then with the exception of one quarter in college when I saved enough money to take a break.

I put myself through college along with a few grants and scholarships—no loans. ME and MY WORK. I saveD my money—bought my houses-bought my cars. ME and MY WORK

So, even though I say and believe God is in control, believe He is my provision, I’m not so sure I’ve ever depended on HIM the way HE wants. Because after all, for almost forty years, it’s been ME and MY WORK.

That is until lately.

I’ve been retired and only working part-time for the past few years. That was really awesome!  I had time to write and enough money not to worry!  And then it happened!

NO JOB! I actually didn’t freak out at first. I assumed something would come along at the last minute. But it didn’t.

The last check came and then it wasn’t ME and MY WORK anymore! Just me!  Oh, that’s right, I admit it—I forgot about God for a few anxiety-filled weeks. I worried, I grumbled to myself. I was more anxious than I’d been in years!

And it was driving me crazy!

Suddenly, my peace and joy was replaced with worry and aggravation. A lot of it and I didn’t like it. But I didn’t stop me from doing it until one day when I realized by worrying I wasn’t trusting God. I was NOT placing my confidence in God as my provider.

HE had been my provider all along but as with us fleshly humans, I forgot that for awhile…

So, now each time the worry comes back, I say a quick prayer: “I know You love me. You are all-powerful and I know you will work this out for my good.” Sometimes, it’s simpler and even quicker: “I need you or Your Will be done.”

The anxiety and worry are slowly being replaced by the peace and joy again. And that is wonderful!

We don’t, can’t, and won’t always know why things happen the way they do, but we always have a choice in how we react to them. We can choose to believe God’s promises. We can choose to believe God loves us and will take care of us. We can choose to stay in faith.

My life circumstances may still a mess, but as long as I keep my eyes on God, my faith remains steady. I now know that GOD truly is in control and my times are indeed in HIS hands.

Interestingly enough, I wrote the above devotion a few months ago before I developed complications from the Gamma Knife treatment for my brain tumors. Because of the complications, I was put on high dosages of steroids. And there would have been no way I could have worked during that time. And that would have only put me under more stress–something I certainly didn’t need.

God knew what he was doing when He decided it was time for me to retire for real.

He was in control and He knew what He was doing.

He was working my circumstances out for what was best for me–even though I couldn’t see it at the time.

That’s what TRUST and FAITH  are all about!

 

SHARING TIME: Share a time when what seemed like bad circumstances actually turned out to be the best thing for you. And allowed you to know God was working things out for you.

 

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