Mark Affleck

Are YOU Running Away from Russian Tanks?

February 28, 2022
Spiritual Growth

Images from the planet’s other side show Russian tanks in a long and frightening queue thundering toward Ukraine’s capital. The cameras then cut to the city’s center where citizen soldiers, behind anguished and tortured expressions—prepare for battle.

That scene makes me wonder how many of those brave souls are pushing back on a pulsating urge to RUN AWAY. But then I realized that it does not take a war to make us want to run away.

I tried to run away once as a kid growing up in Northern California and it didn’t work out very well. I made a couple of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and sprinted away from our single-story ranch house. Three hours later I was crying and headed back home to get acquainted, again, with the brown side of my dad’s 36-inch belt. (Unlike our Heavenly father who always welcomes our return home to him.)

There’s a good chance that YOU have something in your life RIGHT NOW that you want to RUN AWAY from and escape. Perhaps it’s a relationship in conflict. Maybe a financial crisis. It could be feelings of inadequacy. A surprise diagnosis on your health. Or something God has called you do, or to stop doing.

I get it. We think our escape will ease the pain and quicken the trial’s departure. But convincing our mind to escape from whatever is pressing in on us creates an immediate disconnect from reality and disrupts (at minimum) our walk with God. Believing those thoughts will INCREASE our urge to run away because the pain remains and actually intensifies. It’s still there!

Only Christ can help us deal with the pain that rolls off life’s assembly line. God is beckoning us to follow him into the light—not run away—so we can be used to spread the Good News and live out our life purpose.

“…Do not be afraid or discouraged because of this vast army. For the battle is not yours, but God’s.” 2 Chronicles 20:15

It is never God’s will for us to run from pain or the difficulties of life. Never. He wants us to put our faith in him. He wants us to stand firm in the face of life’s tests and trials, knowing he can be trusted. And he wants us to be quiet so he can comfort our restless soul.

I ask God to give me the wisdom to not run from my pain and, instead, call on HIM. To remind me that he is in control and the battle is his and I just need to embrace his love.


Are you running away from something that should be handed off to God? Do you feel like running away right now? What would happen if you put off that feeling for a day and specifically and passionately asked God for relief?

 “For in the day of trouble he will keep me safe in his dwelling; he will hide me in the shelter of his sacred tent.” Psalm 27:5

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