Jim Winkler, President and General Secretary of the National Council of Churches, led a second Bible Study on the morning of Sunday, June 12th at the Annual Conference session. In his presentation, he talked about the fact that we are in “anxious times now related to the Presidential election, racism, and tensions around the world."  He quoted from several scriptures, including First John, as he talked about our need for God’s love in an anxious age. He stated that he is drawn to people who emanate calmness. “Jesus exhibited calmness when under pressure,” he said.

Winkler explained that when we are fearful, we are not connected to God. We panic and don’t make good decisions. We fear that we are shrinking and declining. He then asked the Conference to discuss how fear manifests itself in your lives, and how you respond as a faithful child of God.

He said, “It’s important to talk about fear and how we respond to fear. Fear stands for false evidence appearing real.” He continued, “Fear feels more real and more urgent than love. It holds us back. But we are not powerless to influence our times.”

“The answer is Jesus Christ,” he said, “He is the center of our lives and binds us together across ethnicities. We cannot lose our passion for Jesus Christ. He speaks to our deepest longings and needs. Complete love drives out fear.”