#FEARLESS365 is a yearlong study of God’s commandment to us to live without fear. For 365 days, we will focus on one scripture and volunteers from all over the world will share their personal thoughts and what God has shared with them on the specific verse. For more info… go here.
But now, this is what the LORD says– he who created you, Jacob, he who formed you, Israel: “Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine.
My 2 year old granddaughter was climbing a small rock wall on our outdoor playset. She was halfway up when she lost her footing and fear turned to panic as she called out for help. I placed my hand on her back and said “I’m right here Lilley, you can do it!”
Her fear subsided; she found her footing and made it triumphantly to the top.
As I meditated on Isaiah 43:1, my thoughts took me to recent years when fear in my life escalated to panic. The gripping terror in the night while our son served in Afghanistan, the sickening anxiety of a child struggling with addiction, and the dread of the unknown as a biopsy was performed. Will he return? Will she recover? What if. . .
It was during these challenges in life that I learned to place my confidence in the God of never the less. Isaiah 41:1 reminds me of His great power. If God is powerful enough to form me and redeem my soul He can be trusted with the uncertainties that threaten to steal my joy and paralyze me.
I love that God begins with the reminder of who He is – Creator and Redeemer. The God of the universe gently whispers “Do not be afraid.” By resting in God’s call to fear not, I have to come to the place of trusting Him even if the unthinkable happens. I wish I could say I have arrived and fear no longer raises its menacing head.
I’m certain when Lilley cried out for help, the voice of a stranger to her would not have brought her any peace or comfort. I called her by name and she knew everything would be okay.
God says “I have called you by your name, you are mine.” Oh my goodness what an amazing truth! My Creator knows my name! When anxiety over things unknown begins to creep in, God has provided a way out. He didn’t stop after saying “Fear not.” No, He reminds me I belong to Him and I need not be concerned with my footing. God has strengthened my faith on the foundation of His kept promises.
Shelley Pierce is a Director of Preschool and Children’s Ministries at Towering Oaks Baptist Church. She lives in Greeneville, Tennessee. She thinks she is a bread-baker extraordinaire!