Do not be afraid—I am with you!
I am your God—let nothing terrify you!
I will make you strong and help you;
I will protect you and save you.
Isaiah 41:10 (GNT)
According to Mr. Google, the Bible records the words, “Fear not,” 365 times. I’m sure when you repeated an instruction to your child more than once, it was because it was very important or they weren’t getting it. Obviously. God knows that His children will have fear and offers His encouragement every day.
Fear is driving us today. Let’s look at a few of these verses and see if they speak to our circumstances.
So be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid and do not panic before them. For the LORD your God will personally go ahead of you. He will neither fail you nor abandon you. Deuteronomy 31:6
COVID tops the list of fears. We have spent nine months watching television, waiting for the headlines, and living under the restrictions and frustrations that have dramatically changed our lives. Lives lost, jobs lost, freedom lost, plans lost. I never knew that toilet paper was so precious. Now, we wait each day to see the results of the surge that the Thanksgiving travel may have generated. Last night a friend got a text on her phone announcing that the hospitals are full in Tucson which changes how we make plans when the specter of disease and death hover overhead. “Fear not.”
Anxiety in a man’s heart weighs him down, but a good word makes him glad. Proverbs 12:25
Children are missing out on a year of school. Distance learning is not working for every child with hands-on teaching necessary for so many subjects. We witnessed a tutoring session of a high school boy by an older gentleman at a local coffee shop while sitting outside on the covered patio. After the kid left, I asked the man how it was going. He said he was teaching this kid math. He needed to be there to watch him work out a problem so that he could help and correct him. That’s impossible from a computer. This man was giving hope to a student, worried about his grade. “Fear not.”
For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind. 2 Timothy 1:7
The frustration level is beginning to erupt in anger in the streets, at board meetings, on social media. We are tired of trying to follow the rules and still see our freedoms restricted. Yes, following the science sounds good but the arbitrary impositions on everyone doesn’t allow that science to determine what the rules are. Since we know that older people with other health issues are the main target for this virus, let’s make sure they have the information, help, and access that they need to stay healthy. But, school officials, governors, and medical personnel are so afraid that this disease is uncontrollable that they are making judgments that affect all of us rather than trusting that we can make decisions for ourselves. “Fear not.”
Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. Matthew 6:34
And then there is the election. The results are not settled but the time is approaching when results will be confirmed. The nation is so divided that one side or the other will be upset with the final outcome. A loss of confidence in the process is my greatest concern. The survival of the republic may be compromised. We have withstood a Civil War, the attacks of 9/11, racial tension in the streets, to name a few. It’s time to accept the will of the people, move on graciously, and continue to work for the good of us all. “Fear not.”
When I am afraid, I will put my trust in you. Psalm 56:3
Our hope is in God alone for the future of this virus, our children, our way of life, our country, and our future. I continue to learn that I have no control over all of these problems. The only person I can control is myself and I choose to trust God. He has my back and wants good things for His children. He will never fail us. Let’s be ambassadors of hope to this hurting world. “Fear not.”
Peace is what I leave with you; it is my own peace that I give you. I do not give it as the world does. Do not be worried and upset; do not be afraid. John 14:27