Saturday, December 17, 2011

Fear God

I struggle with fearing God sometimes.  I'm a pretty positive person.  I usually look at the bright side of something, even in tragic situations.  I respect God, love Him with everything I am, and try to serve Him often.  But do I fear Him?

Every week I have the privilege of attending a campus ministry at Piper High School.  It's a public school that has a tough reputation, but it has done a decent job of cleaning up it's act over the past 5-7 years.  It still has a long way to go, but has a lot of good students walking the hallways.

This past Tuesday, I got into the classroom that we use a little early and got to chat with a few of the students that don't normally come to the campus ministry meeting.  As each conversation drew to a close, I told the student we'd love to have them stay.  We had pizza, soda, and Christmas cookies!  Woo-Hoo!  Most students politely said they had plans.  One student I've been chatting with for a few weeks now laughed as I invited him to stay (again) and said he already had something going on.  When I asked him what that was, he laughed again and said, "I'm already going to hell so I don't think I can stay."  I assured him he could stay, but he again reminded me that he was going to hell and that there was no hope for him.  I smiled and told him that I disagreed with him and briefly explained that everyone can be forgiven.  He laughed, said, "Not me!", then gave me a big smile, high five, and wished me a Merry Christmas (kind of ironic I guess) before he left the room.

I don't know if you've ever encountered someone that flat out claimed they were going to hell and were excited about it.  It breaks my heart when I see people willingly choose that as their destiny.  I'm positive this young man does not have a proper understanding about hell or a proper fear of God or he would surely not be joking about hell the way he was.

Jesus knows fear. He was tortured, mocked, and murdered on the cross...experienced every sin imaginable on the cross and was separated from His Father as a result. There's no doubt Jesus knows fear better than any of us can imagine. Listen to His words in Luke 12:

“Dear friends, don’t be afraid of those who want to kill your body; they cannot do any more to you after that.  But I’ll tell you whom to fear. Fear God, who has the power to kill you and then throw you into hell. Yes, He’s the one to fear."

Strong words from the Son of God. However, if anyone had the right and knowledge to offer such advice, it was Jesus.

Does your life have a proper fear of God? Do your words and actions show respect/reverence/love for a Father that has done everything He can to prove His love for you? Do you take Him for granted? Do you forget about Him until you need something? Does your life mock Him in any way? How often does sin enter your life? What do you do about it when it shows up? To what lengths are you willing to go to make sure you properly fear the God who gave everything to share a relationship with you?

I can't wait till school starts up again next year so I can see this young man again. I'm praying for him often and hope/pray that somehow he will see Christ this Christmas. Maybe you will be the one who shows Him Christ in such a way that He finally makes sense.

Fear God enough to accept His love and share it with those around you. Never stop displaying Christ to the people God surrounds you with each day. Stay strong.

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