That's not to say that I wouldn't be afraid if it happened, I have just never really been the type to worry or dwell on the possibility of something bad happening on a big scale.
Recently though, like the past few months, I have had this little nagging thought about what it would be like if something truly terrible happened and we found ourselves living in a world much different than the safe little America that we happened to be born in that has provided comfort after comfort.
War hasn't reached America's shores in a very long time, and growing up in the 80s and 90s it never crossed my mind that it even could. I don't mean to say that I was naive, I just didn't think about it. I don't know what made me start thinking about it recently, but I have found myself lost in thought about what it must be like to live through a war in your land. I'm guessing it probably has something to do with the fact that I read two novels set in WWII France and Germany back to back. Ha.
My recent thoughts aren't deeply rooted in fear, but I can sense a bit of it creeping in the more I think about it, and that bothers me. I don't like to be afraid of things that are out of my control. I don't want to worry about the future or my family's safety. So I did what I do when my brain gets a little janky and my heart starts getting unsettled. I looked to scripture and started praying - seeking to combat the worrisome thoughts with the truth of the Gospel. I started thinking about kingdoms and nations and how for as long as there have been humans, there has been war. One kingdom invades another. Someone wins, someone loses, and lots of people die. Over and over and over. Kingdoms fall, one after the other. Once mighty empires have ceased to be, and in this fallen world that will only continue.
But there is a Kingdom that is different.
There is a King that reigns over a Kingdom that will have no end.
For those that believe and have faith in Christ, that Kingdom is our home. We are citizens of this eternal Kingdom, even now, as we temporarily live in the sometimes harrowing chaos of this earth. While there are many scary things that can and sometimes do happen, we don't live in fear because our hope doesn't rest in the stability of our nation or it's leadership. It doesn't rest in our ability to care for our families or keep them entirely from harms way. Our hope rests in our King Jesus who has secured our place at his everlasting banqueting table. Our hope is anchored behind the veil by a God who promises that not only is He on His throne now, but He is coming back to get us, His bride. And His promises are true. His Kingdom is one of peace, and it cannot be destroyed. Darkness will not defeat it. IT WILL NOT END. EVER.
As this season of Advent approaches I find it such a sweet reminder that "the whole Bible is telling one big story - that God loves His people and comes to rescue them." (Jesus Storybook Bible)
As we look forward to Christmas and the celebration of His birth amidst the seeming uncertainty of our immediate futures, I pray that we will push back the fears that our flesh reaches for and cling to His promises.
"For to us a child is born, to us a son is given,
and the government will be on his shoulders.
And He will be called
Prince of Peace.
Of the increase of his government and peace
there will be no end.
He will reign on David's throne and over his kingdom,
establishing it and upholding it with
justice and righteousness from that time on and forever."
Isaiah 9:6-7 (emphasis mine)
Gabriel, the angel, to Mary: "Do not be afraid, Mary, you have found favor with God.
You will be with child and give birth to a son,
and you are to give him the name Jesus.
He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High.
The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David,
and He will reign over the house of Jacob forever;
his kingdom will never end."
Luke 1:31-33 (emphasis mine)
We are children of the Most High King, and our kingdom will have no end. Let's celebrate and walk in the freedom from fear that truth brings, whatever we find ourselves faced with or called to do.