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Stand firm, and you will win life. Luke 21:19 (NIV) 

This week I received this picture from my grandson who shares my irrational fear of spiders. Healthy fear is a good thing, but fear can also be harmful. Today is Veterans Day, and we can give heartfelt thanks to our faithful veterans who made great sacrifices to assure our freedom, safety, and security. Yet fear is a thread running through our days. 

Being scared causes us to close off, panic, and turn in on ourselves. God calls us to be an open community, make wise decisions, and be in peace as we reach out in love to our neighbors. The power of fear is strong so we need constant reminders of God’s presence and call to faith. We hear these reminders in God’s word in weekly worship and in faithful conversation with each other.  

This week I was reminded of the song, “Fear is Not My Future” by Todd Galberth. It is an antidote to the thread of fear. It is a great reminder that God is in the center of our lives, and we need not fear. In the upcoming gospel Jesus warns the disciples about scary things coming like wars, betrayal, and suffering. Yet he calls the disciples to stand firm in faith in scary times which brings us peace, hope, joy, and love in Christ. Faith can cut the thread of fear.  

If you feel scared reach out to a trusted person. Listen to uplifting music that reminds you God is with you. Take the Faith Challenge on our Faith Formation website, utilize our Prayer Playlist, and follow Stories of Joy. Thank a veteran for their faithful service to our country keeping us safe, and trust in God’s promise from Isaiah, “Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, Yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.”

Stand firm, Pastor Andrea