Hunkering Down

  • Randy Karlberg
man sitting down alone

This “hunkering down” stuff can mess with our minds if we let it!  We are asked to do a simple thing:  Stay home, and stay away from people!  I will admit there are some days where that is the kind of assignment I am looking for.  But the prolonged hunker down and social distancing can be very difficult even though it is so incredibly simple.  It’s not very technical, it just takes some advanced planning.  Even if you forget something from one of the essential businesses still open, we are able to get almost everything we need.  Really how difficult is this mandate?

Well, it can be extremely difficult if we do not “take every thought captive” as we read in 2 Corinthians 10:5.  The evil one loves to fill our minds with fear, doubt, and “I must do this myself.”  He loves to twist and distort those things that we know to be true.  In fact, he told Eve in the garden, “did God really say…?”  This has been his strategy from the beginning and it has not changed much.  We as God’s children are to focus on the promises (truth) of God and not allow our minds to get swayed by circumstances or arguments.  We must preach to ourselves using God’s Word. 

Through the years a passage of Scripture that has preached to me more times than I can count is Philippians 4:6-8.  If you do not have this memorized and in your spiritual warfare arsenal, take time to do that now!  And have your family memorize it with you!  In Philippians 4 we are commanded not to be anxious about anything!  Wow!  Okay, how do we do that?  With prayer and appealing to God.  We are told to do this “with thanksgiving.”  When we present our requests to God with a thankful heart, we are more in line with His discernment in using all circumstances for our lives or His purposes. We are promised “peace that surpasses all understanding.”  And not just peace, but this incredible peace will “guard our hearts and minds in Christ Jesus!”  Isn’t that what we long for in times of anxious trial?  

Then we are commanded to focus on what is true, honorable, pure, just, lovely, commendable, etc.  We are to do mental gymnastics focusing on the positive that God’s has given us through the years!  We are called to REMEMBER!  Doesn’t that sound familiar?  But if we go back in this chapter and look at verse 4, it tells us to “Rejoice in the Lord.” It also tells us to “let our reasonableness be known to everyone!”  This all starts with our joyful hearts to the Lord!  Praise Him for what He has done!  Tell Him!  And tell others why you are joyful in the midst of struggles and trials.  Like many things in life getting on in the quarantine really is not very difficult.  We just need to do what the Word says. 

A vivid picture that helps me is from Matthew 14:22-32.  Please take time to read this, even though I am confident you are familiar with it.  Peter and the disciples are out in the boat in a great storm.  Jesus comes walking to them on the water.  They are frightened, but Jesus tells them not to be afraid, “It is I!”  Peter, a lover of the Lord and adventure, asks to walk on the water to Him.  Jesus says, “Come.”  Now this is not a difficult thing to step out of a boat, although the storm made in a bit problematic I’m sure.  But this was very difficult because the time had come for Peter to see if he really was going to put his trust in Jesus or not.  Does he really believe in Jesus?  Acting on your faith shows what you truly believe.  As you know, he did get out of the boat and had an amazing adventure!  Then he learned the lesson that we all must learn.  He began to sink when he took his eyes off Jesus and was afraid of the wind!  Jesus reached out to him and pulled him to the boat. 

We are going through a storm right now.  It is a time to ask if you really believe in the God you say you believe in?  The things God asks us to do are not very difficult.  The things that make it hard are the storms and the whispers in our ear that God is not really who He says He is.  The choice is ours.  Do you believe what you say you believe? 

Please spend some time in these passages of Scripture on your own.  The Bible is God’s Truth!  Do you believe this?