Wednesday, October 23, 2013

What Are You Doing Here?

Sometimes, ya just want to hide.

For way too many years I ran from my issues. I ran because, to be quite frank about it, I was scared to death of the confrontation it would cause to stand up for myself! Oh, not just with people, but with myself and especially with God. Yes, I was totally afraid of God. Can you imagine that? Me, afraid of God...my loving, understanding, nurturing heavenly Daddy! But I was. All because of the intimidation of others.

Being intimidated by other people doesn't mean that I was afraid to come out in the open. I was not agoraphobic, although it would have been very easy for me to be. Staying in the safety of my home and never leaving these four walls was becoming increasingly more enticing as the years went by. I wanted less and less to be around people because well, everyone I got near just seemed to feel as if they had to bash me for something or other. It's as if I had a neon sign on my forehead blinking, "Easy target!" These were all enemy attacks that I couldn't identify due to the intimidation I had lived with for so long. 
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You know, another person had some issues with intimidation and fear. The prophet Elijah went through some dark moments. To the point that he ran and hid in a cave! *

Elijah was afraid and fled for his life.... There he came to a cave, where he spent the night. But the Lord said to him, “What are you doing here, Elijah?” ~1 Kings 19:3(a), 9, NLT

The odd thing about Elijah's moment of fear and doubt is that it came on the heels of a great victory. Elijah had just killed all the prophets of a false god... and someone told on him. Then someone else wanted to kill him for it! Elijah heard about it, got scared, and ran!

But even though Elijah ran, God still took care of him. And when he got to the cave he decided to hide in, GOD WAS ALREADY THERE! Can you imagine finding the most remote place in the world to hide, thinking that your enemy can't find you there...and all of a sudden you hear the voice of God say, "What are you doing here?"

You know, He does the same with us today. We run, we try to hide, and just when we think we have it made, God says, "What are you doing here?" Is there anywhere we can go that God isn't? Is there anywhere we can hide that He won't find us? No.

Lord, you have examined my heart and know everything about me... I can never escape from your Spirit! I can never get away from your presence! ~Psalm 139:1, 7, NLT

God is everywhere, all the time. There is nowhere that you can go where He can't or won't find you, or where He isn't already! If you read all of Psalm 139, you will see that He knows everything about you, inside and out.

We may be intimidated by people around us. They may threaten, ridicule, and do everything they can to insult, embarrass, and make sure they ruin us publicly. But we don't have to be like Elijah and run. Instead, we can take a stand. We can smile knowing that our God is an awesome God. He will take care of us and He will also take care of our enemies.

We can be absolutely confident that no matter what anyone does, trying to attack us, they will not succeed. And anything anyone says against us will come back on them and they will be the ones who fall (see Isaiah 54:17). Why? Because His Word says so! God is on our side! He will protect and provide for us. 

He did for Elijah. Then He sent him back the way he came, and gave him explicit instructions on what to do. What God told Elijah was basically that He, God, would take care of Elijah's enemies! And He will do the same for you and me today. 

You and I have too much to do to allow other people to keep us hiding in the cave! So, what are you doing here? Get out of there and go back the way you came. Stand tall. Stand confident. And let God fight your battle for you.

* For an in depth story of Elijah in the cave, see 1 Kings 19.

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