“Teacher,” they asked, “when will these things happen? And what will be the sign that they are about to take place?” He replied: “Watch out that you are not deceived. For many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am he,’ and, ‘The time is near.’ Do not follow them. When you hear of wars and uprisings, do not be frightened. These things must happen first, but the end will not come right away.” (Luke 21:7-9)
When I had cancer in 2010, I was frightened at first, but God held my hand and renewed my strength. I’m no longer frightened by death. Some days I look forward to the perfect body God promises we’ll receive when our earthly body dies. Through having cancer, I learned each day is precious and shouldn’t be wasted. My passion is writing and studying Scripture, and I’m thankful to spend my days doing that.
The disciples asked when the temple in Jerusalem would be destroyed. Jesus didn’t tell them. He was concerned about them being deceived and frightened. He warned them there would be false Messiahs and not to follow them. Theudas and Judah the Galilean were the false Messiahs He spoke of (See Acts 5:35-37), and many of their followers were executed. The Jewish/Roman war began in 66 AD, four years before the temple was destroyed. He didn’t want his disciples to be frightened by war and death. The end of the temple would not come until 70 AD, and Jesus’ disciples had much work to do.
Jesus died on the cross to give us peace, empower us with the Holy Spirit, give us hope of eternal life, and enable us to live life abundantly. We cannot live the dreams God put in our hearts when we are frightened, deceived, and nervous. When we trust God, we live our best lives.
The eleventh step to leaving a bad habit or trait at the cross is to leave negativity at the cross. We must believe we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us. (Philippians 4:13)
Dearest Heavenly Father, I love you. You’re my strength and shield. I trust You, and You help me. Thank you for saving me and giving me Scriptures to know You better. I give you authority over my heart and life. Help me find Your refuge that removes anxiety and fear, so I can remove negativity from my life. ______________ is weighing me down. Render this negative situation positive. Make my enemies a footstool for my feet. Give me encouragers who will pray for me as I leave _______at the cross. I know I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. In Jesus’ name I pray, amen.