Raise your hand if, like me, you’ve had two or three—or more—people send you YouTube links to Christian prophecies that reveal something awful is about to happen. Money evaporating. Cities burning. UN troops policing US soil. On and on it goes. One thing I’ve noticed in all the videos I’ve been sent, or the ones that YouTube lines up for me once I watch the first one, is the admonition, “Brace yourself.”
I don’t know what to make of the prophecies. There are 10 or more commentaries for each one so you can really go down the rabbit hole reading them and trying to make sense of it all. What, if anything, is God trying to tell us?
I’m going to suggest it is the same thing He has told us over and over from the beginning, “Fear not, for I am with you.”
In the book of John, Jesus prophesies his death several times and each time He tells the disciples He is doing this so that when it happens, they will believe. In John 16:33 He adds, “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
Jesus told them it was so they would believe. Believe what? I think He wanted them to believe that He knows all things, controls all things, prepares us for all things. He shows this is true when He tells the disciples that He has overcome the world. They were to rest in His peace during trouble and know that it would be alright.
Some seem to be taking these warning to mean we should stockpile food, water, and weapons. Run for the hills and take cover. It is, perhaps, wisdom to be prepared with the things that we need in an emergency. Hurricanes, earthquakes, and other disasters have proven this to be true. However, I believe the real direction is, “Brace yourself.”
What does that mean?
The Bible tells us that God is our protection and savior.
- The LORD is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold. –Psalm 18:2 (NIV)
- From the end of the earth will I cry unto thee, when my heart is overwhelmed: lead me to the rock that is higher than I. For thou hast been a shelter for me, and a strong tower from the enemy. I will abide in thy tabernacle forever: I will trust in the covert of thy wings. – Psalm 61:1-4 (KJV)
- Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the LORD our God. – Psalm 20:7 (NIV)
“Brace yourself” means run to the Rock. Find your Hiding Place in the Fortress and hold on tight.
If there is a warning, it is against trusting in our own wisdom and strength. In Isaiah 30:15 (AMP) God told His people, “For the Lord God, the Holy One of Israel has said this, “In returning [to Me] and rest you shall be saved, In quietness and confident trust is your strength. But you were not willing.” The passage goes on to talk about the disastrous results of trusting in your own plans. But He continues, “you will weep no longer. He will most certainly be gracious to you at the sound of your cry for help; when He hears it, He will answer you”(verse 19).
So, don’t let your heart be troubled. You’ve already learned so much, endured so much over the past few months. You are growing battle ready. As Christians in the time of COVID-19, we have had to learn to seek the Lord, trust Him and depend upon Him. No matter what lies in the days ahead, He will never leave us nor forsake us. “So put on God’s armor now! Then when the evil day comes, you will be able to resist the enemy’s attacks; and after fighting to the end, you will still hold your ground” (Ephesians 6:13 GNT). Every part of that armor is pure Jesus…His righteousness, His peace, His faith, His salvation, and His Word.
Wrap yourself up in Him. Tell Him your fears and worries. Ask for His help. Thank Him. Praise Him. It will be okay.