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Witness Protection Program (a Timeless Truths blog post)

girl protected

Imagine witnessing a crime so horrific it leaves you running to the authorities in a panic, desperate for their protection. You know, deep down, that if the truth comes to light about what really happened and who was really involved the perpetrator would blame you … and you alone for being the one who ratted on them. Then, without a shadow of a doubt, you know you would be their next target. In order to escape that scenario from becoming a reality you take refuge in a witness protection program. You choose to listen to the people who tell you that you will be safe … as soon as you move out of the area, change your name, change your habits … change your very identity. Because of fear, you listen to them and you do as they say … and you gain the illusion that you are safe (at least from the original perpetrator). However, you find that you have a hard time letting go of the fear. Wherever you turn, you find yourself suspicious … and you ask yourself, “Can these people really be trusted? If I let my guard down and show them who I really am … on the inside (as well as the outside) … can I trust that they would really accept me for me?” And so you hold people at arms length … wary of gaining meaningful true friendships with people … always afraid of what they’ll think … if only they knew … Perhaps you aren’t in the witness protection program yourself but you can still relate. You can still identify with the fear of being accepted … if only the people around you knew the real you … on the inside … the part of you that you’ve been reluctant to share … because of allowing that fear to cripple you. Proverbs 29:25 The Message (MSG) declares, “The fear of human opinion disables; trusting in God protects you from that.” So, the timeless truth for today is that we need to run to our authority whenever we feel afraid … we need to run to God. We need to receive safety from other’s opinions of us (real or imagined) by resting in God’s opinion of us. We need to remind ourselves that God accepts us, approves of us, and loves us unconditionally … no matter what we look like (on the inside or on the outside). As we trust in God (who gave us the ability to have a personal relationship with Jesus … the only one who could ever make us holy, acceptable, and pleasing to God through His death on the cross) we can have confidence. We can come into agreement with God rather than with the opinions of man (or even with any negative opinion of ourselves). Because God accepts us (flaws and all) we can accept ourselves … and learn to open ourselves up around other people by making the choice to just be ourselves … by making the choice to allow others to get to know who we really are (flaws and all). We can have confidence in who we are, personally … a unique creation created by the Creator of all. When we allow ourselves to be who we really are rooted and grounded with our true identity being “in Christ” as God’s child since we’ve received His gift of salvation, we will actually be allowing others to see not only who we really are, but also who Christ really is, in us.

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Out of control (a Timeless Truths blog post)

snowy road red truck

Have you ever been driving on a snowy, slippery back road out in the middle of nowhere when … all of a sudden … you felt the tires start to slide? Then, before you knew it, your whole vehicle started to head in a direction you weren’t planning on … right into the ditch. At the same time … at that precise moment … you realized you were out of control. You knew that, no matter what you did to try and steer away from danger, it would be pointless. The best you could hope for was to send up a prayer heavenward saying, “Jesus take the wheel,” realizing only He could protect you and only He could get you out of the mess you found yourself in. Spiritually speaking, we have a choice when we realize that we are out of control, but God is not. We can either be frustrated or we can be flexible … letting the Holy Spirit bend us towards God’s perfect will; towards His perfect plan (and towards His perfect peace). You see, God is in control. Everything happens “according to the plan of Him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of His will” (as Ephesians 1:11 NIV tells us). We may think we are in control … we may do our best to plan, prepare, and figure things out on our own (using our own understanding oftentimes). However, the reality is only God is sovereign, only God is really in control. So, today, if you find yourself realizing you’re in a situation in which you have no control I have good news for you. Being out of control but trusting the One who is in control is the safest place you can be. When we entrust our hopes, dreams, plans … our very lives to the Master of the Universe; to the King of Kings; to the Lord of Heaven and Earth; to our faithful Father and best Friend … we can trust and believe that “in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose” (as Romans 8:28 NIV tells us). Therefore, be encouraged – God isn’t done yet! The best is yet to come!

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