How do we face the news in this world around us? What do we feel or think when we wake up to news like today’s, that an 8.9 magnitude earthquake in the western Pacific region just caused death, destruction and devastation in Japan, and tsunami warnings have been issued all along the Pacific Rim? 
Even before we get out of bed, we awake to a battlefield of fear and anxiety, whether real or imagined. Do we just ignore those fears? Jesus says to face them…His way:
“In the world you will have tribulation.”
“Take heart; I have overcome the world.”
He didn’t mince words and say everything was going to be rosy or carefree, but He said, He has overcome the world–He is the ultimate triumph, beyond any fear or dread we face. We can get so wrapped up in all the issues swirling around us, but God calls His people to think differently than others (Isaiah 8:12, 13):
“You are not to say, ‘It is a conspiracy!’ in regard to all that this people call a conspiracy, And you are not to fear what they fear or be in dread of it.’
When the Lord tells us not to fear, He always gives the reason why:
“It is the LORD of Hosts whom you should regard as holy. And He shall be your fear, and He shall be your dread. Then He shall become a sanctuary..”
Jesus has overcome the world. When we believe in Him and fully surrender to Him as our sovereign and merciful Lord, He becomes a place of rest and peace for us–a sanctuary. Isaiah describes a sanctuary as:
“…a shelter to give shade from the heat by day, and refuge and protection (a hiding place) from the storm and the rain.” Isaiah 4:6
Jesus is our Hiding Place.
“For in the day of trouble, He will conceal me in His shelter, in the secret place of His tent He will hide me; He will lift me up on a rock.” Psalm 27:5
We have a shelter, a hiding place, in our loving Saviour whom the world does not seek. We don’t have to fear their fear. Jesus is with us.
“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.” John 14:27
Dear Lord, You know that as soon as we awake, our minds take us to fearful places. Some of these places are real, and many more, imagined. We submit our thoughts and fears to you today, and trust in You. Lift us above their fears–the ones shouted from the media and all around–and be a barrier, a hiding place, where we can enter into Your rest. Our hope is in You. And after you comfort us, help us to take this Hope to others whose hearts are failing them for fear. We know and are known by the Lord who has overcome the world! In His wonderful name, Amen.
“…Do not fear what they fear; do not be frightened.” But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have, with gentleness and respect. I Peter 3:14, 15
There are so many encouraging Scriptures to explore regarding the peace we can have in Jesus as we journey through this troubled world. Please come back every Friday to learn more!
 And please pray for Japan, and all the lives affected by this awful event!