Tough Times Ahead
Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with My victorious right hand (v.10).
You’ve sent out countless resumes. Yet employment still seems elusive. You’ve led a healthy lifestyle. Yet the cancer marker is abnormally high. You’ve tried to be a good parent. Yet your child is choosing not to follow God. The list goes on.
The only certainty in life is uncertainty. Even after you’ve done all you can possibly do, the future is still beyond your control.
In our fight against fear and anxiety in this uncertain world, it’s easy to turn to idols and to make gods for ourselves. That’s what Isaiah described in 41:5-7. The nations refused to acknowledge that Yahweh is the God of history (vv.2-4). So, in a bid to feel more secure, they rushed to make new idols and tried to strengthen them (which is rather ironic).
What might that look like today? Well, we could strengthen our idol by burying ourselves in the Internet, in amassing possessions, in developing our intellect, or in building up our bodies.
But God calls His people to respond differently to fear. We’re reminded that He chose, called, and will never reject us. Our God says: “Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with My victorious right hand” (v.10).
In our fear, let’s focus on two truths: “I am with you” and “I am your God.” I Am is the God who does not change. His truths and purpose do not change (Numbers 23:19; Ephesians 1:11). This unchanging God is with us. Don’t be afraid. Don’t be discouraged. He will strengthen and help you. He will hold you steady.
—Poh Fang Chia
How do you normally handle fears? How can you keep your focus on the two truths: “I am with you” and “I am your God”?