Dwell Secure

dwellsecurely

Proverbs 1:33 but whoever listens to me will dwell secure and will be at ease, without dread of disaster.

Have you ever had a moment where you were paralyzed by fear? I have. I was sitting in front of the post office, trying to will myself to move. In my lap were 50 letters, stamped and ready to go, yet I couldn’t quite make myself place them in the mailbox. My daughter, not used to seeing me respond this way, quickly piped up. “Mom, just place the letters in the mailbox. You won’t get trampled by an elephant.” Her voice shook me back to reality and I quickly prayed a desperate prayer. “Help, Lord.” As I placed the letters where they needed to be, I felt my hands shaking. These were no ordinary letters. No, these were support letters, describing a calling I felt to travel to Africa for an upcoming missions trip. Essentially, sending out those support letters represented my obedience to committing to traveling on this trip. I reasoned, in that parking lot, that if I sent out the letters, I would receive some donations. And if I received donations, I would have to go. And if I went, I was going to either be eaten by a lion, trampled by an elephant, or captured by natives. The fears, although not rational, were enough to keep me up at night. Yet, God had put in my spirit that He wanted me to go. I was used to God telling me to do things. Most of the time, they weren’t things that scared me. They might make me a little nervous our uncomfortable, but up until this point, God had never told me to do something that terrified me. But this time, God kept pushing my heart in such a way that I could think of little else.
As I faced that mailbox, my fear didn’t leave. But, there is a very important piece that started me on a journey to becoming wise. I was obedient, despite my fear. Since that time in my life, I have learned what it means to be obedient to God. Regardless of what things look like in the physical, I have learned that God sees in the spiritual.
As we set out to study Proverbs, I think it is so important to consider a few things. Proverbs is a book about wisdom. Wisdom is not the same as knowledge. Yes, as we acquire knowledge, we do tend to become more wise. But Biblical wisdom is actually about obedience. As we learn who God is, through our obedience, through our relationship, through His faithfulness, we start to gain a confidence in Him. As we pursue Him, something radical starts to happen within our hearts. Fear of the Lord replaces fear of the world. In our first chapter of Proverbs we are introduced to what almost seems like the motto for the book. “The fear of the Lord.” The Hebrew word for fear can be translated also to mean great wonder or awe. Have you ever stood in awe of anything? For me, on that very missions trip, I stood in awe as I looked out over the Great Rift Valley. It was the most beautiful thing I had every laid my eyes on, and I couldn’t tear my eyes away from it. I found myself leaning in, over the peeling white railing, drawn in to this miraculous and breath taking view. That awe is similar to what I think of when I hear the words “fear of the Lord.” Not so much the shrinking back in fear, but more of the leaning in feeling of awe. When you know the Lord, really KNOW him, He draws you in. You can’t look away, you can only stare and lean in because you want to experience more of Him. When you find that place in your relationship with God, the place that comes from knowing and loving Him, the obedience part becomes second nature. You almost don’t even think about it, you just arrive in this place where you wholeheartedly trust Him because you are confident in Him. I have learned over time that there is no safer place to be than right where God wants you. I suspect it may be the same for you once you lean in, in awe of the one who made you. As we start this journey of discovering Proverbs together, my prayer is that you develop the kind of relationship with God that allows you, to dwell secure.

Proverbs 1:33 but whoever listens to me will dwell secure and will be at ease, without dread of disaster.

 

Things to Consider:

What times in your life have you been paralyzed with fear?

If you haven’t been paralyzed, have there been things in your life that you have not done because you were afraid?

How would your life be different if you started listening to God, no matter what?

What is an area of your life that you are not currently being obedient in? How can you start, today, moving towards obedience in that area?

Take some time to pray through these areas of obedience and fear. Ask God to help you to “dwell secure.”

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