And don’t forget to do good and to share with those in need. These are the sacrifices that please God.
Now may the God of peace— who brought up from the dead our Lord Jesus, the great Shepherd of the sheep, and ratified an eternal covenant with his blood— may he equip you with all you need for doing his will. May he produce in you, through the power of Jesus Christ, every good thing that is pleasing to him. All glory to him forever and ever! Amen. (Hebrews 13:6, 16, 20, 21 NLT)
"The Lord is my helper...I will have no fear." I don't believe I can say those words sincerely. I do fear. In a part of mind -- I think well of course you fear...it's only natural. There is truth in that. It is a natural part of our human condition. A facebook friend recently posted that she was not living in fear and was praising God. My inside cynical voice made a snorting sound of derision and then thought...well of course you don't fear...you are young, healthy and have no children. This past November, I spent a lot of time in fear...I was fearful cancer was back. Is that a sin? I don't know. I can tell you it's what I felt. As I wrestle with it, I can tell you I believe it comes down to what you do with the fear...do you let it control you or are you able to recognize it and work through the fear. I could be paralyzed by fear...I choose not to be. I think it's also interesting to contemplate the full quote...mere people cannot strip away my salvation, my belief in God...I do not need to fear the loss of God's love because of the actions of others....that I can say with full confidence and belief. But do I fear. In this world...yes. But there will be no fear in the next world.
I love this benediction. It is beautiful send off to a thought provoking letter. Indeed...all glory to him forever and ever! Amen.