“Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.”Isaiah 41:10
I grew up in West Texas, in dry, cotton country. And I lived in the same house from the time I was around three-months-old until I was eighteen-years-old. The only air conditioning in our home was an evaporative cooler, often times referred to as a “swamp cooler.” It was mounted on the roof of our house on the incline just above a flat portion of roof and was vented into the hallway.
My father would frequently have to go outside, climb up on the roof, and take the three side panels off to service the air conditioner. When he would go up on the roof, I wanted to be with him. I thought it was cool to be on the roof, and I wanted to be with my father. Little did I know, it was also training for me to become the air conditioner service man as I got a little older. But I was fearful of the slope of the roof over the garage where we had to climb up, and of a narrow, pitched area that we had to cross to get to the flat portion of roof where I could watch my father work on the air conditioner.
As long as my father was up there to carry me, I felt safe. And later, as long as he had my hand, I felt secure. My father’s presence helped me not to be frightened. I remember looking down on either side of the narrow passageway and imagining what could happen if I fell off either side. I was glad when my father would give me his strong hand or put me in his strong arms and carry me to the safety of the ladder and then on to the ground. My father was with me and calmed my fears, alleviated my anxiety, and used his strength and will to provide the security and safety that a father should supply to those that are his.
In Isaiah 41, Israel is being assured of God’s help. “Israel” is referred to in verse 8 as “My servant”, “whom I have chosen”, “and the descendants of Abraham My friend.” The other nations turned away to idols, but God is telling His people that He will gather them together and fulfill His promises to them. They do not need to fear because their supreme God promises His presence, and with His presence, His protection. There is no need for anxiety that leads to frantically looking for safety or answers, because He is their personal, powerful God. And whatever the task, God promises to make them courageous and fortify them, surround them and aid them, and to keep and maintain them with His ultimate strength. That is incredible comfort to Israel, if they believe and take God at His Word!
Now Christians are not Israel. But Jesus said, “I and my Father (God) are one” (John 10:30). And “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever” (Hebrews 13:8). If you have received Jesus Christ as Lord, then you are secure in Him! In fact, those who belong to God by faith in Christ, cannot be plucked from God’s hand. You are His, and He is yours! Believing in God and trusting His Word will give you victory over the fear that creeps its way into your life. The anxiety that causes all manner of chaos in your decision-making process will be relieved, because you have a powerful God that is with you, and He is your heavenly Father. His strength and stability is with you and helps you to be steadfast and strong. He surrounds and protects you. He follows close and helps you to stand in the most difficult of times. That is what a Father does for His children. Wow, what a tremendous truth. And our heavenly Father never sleeps, never grows old, and never leaves us.