There’s one thing you don’t hear on 9-11, and it’s the most important thing. Until you trust these words, you’re not in a position of strength to minister God’s comfort to the grieving and his justice to the oppressed and endangered.
“This world is a perfectly safe place to be… as long as you’re in the kingdom of God.”
Huh? If ever there was a day that we’re reminded that we’re not safe it’s 9-11. There are terrorists in our world! There are untold thousands of people in America and around the world who are grieving because a loved one was killed by a terrorist.
The Kingdom of God
Yes, these are frightening and sad realities in our world today. But Dallas Willard’s words remind us of a greater reality, which Jesus was always talking about and demonstrating: the kingdom of God.
God’s kingdom is not just a far off and a way later for when we die—it is present wherever Jesus Christ is Lord (Luke 17:21). He is the King and he’s alive and acting in grace and power with his hosts of angel armies all around you right now.
If we learn to live in terms of the reality of the kingdom of the heavens in our midst rather than the visible world we live in then we will have peace—even in stress, even if we’re endangered, even if we’re harmed or killed.
3,000 years ago the Psalmist was in a time of darkness, surrounded by enemies, and dealing with bad news. He knew the Lord as his ever-present refuge and fortress. He anticipated the coming of the Christ and his kingdom and he prayed for himself and us, that we would not be shaken, but would be like the gracious and compassionate and righteous man: “He will have no fear of bad news; his heart is steadfast, trusting in the Lord” (Psalm 112:7).
I find it helpful to pray the Psalms to Jesus, the one who fulfilled all the prophecies and all the righteousness of the Psalms. So I pray that verse this way:
- “Jesus, I hold you in my heart… I have no fear.”
As a Breath Prayer, I breathe in with a whisper: “Jesus, I hold you in my heart…” And I breathe out with a whisper, “I have no fear.” Inhaling the peace of Christ… Exhaling fear.
I also use it in intercession for others:
- “Jesus, may ______ hold you in her heart… May she have no fear.”
More Soul Shepherding
Psalm 91 is a psalm I turn to often for myself and others when feelings of fear come. Here’s little prayer that distills this beloved Psalm: In Jesus’ Shadow.
“Smile in your Storm” explains how Jesus remained at peace when he and his disciples were in a boat on the Sea of Galilee and being pounded by a terrible storm that threatened their lives.