DATE WRITTEN: Saturday, 2020-07-11
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL
BIBLE REFERENCE: Isaiah 41:10
TRANSLATION: New Living Translation (NLT)
BIBLE TEXT: 10 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.
OBSERVATION: We’ve heard it way too many times this year about the unique challenges that have faced us personally, as a family, as a church, as a business, a city, state, country and even the world. And while I realize that God’s Word speaks directly to all these, I want us to particularly focus on the unique challenges you may have faced as an individual this year, whether from COVID or from any other source. As you reflect, please read verse 10 again, and notice the ways that God is reminding us about how special we are in His eyes, and how He cares for us in every circumstance of life! For He is our God!
APPLICATION: When life becomes challenging, and when circumstances become greater than anything we could contend with personally, we either go into overload and cease to think logically, or we tend to look for a professional or close friend to help us work through our issues. Israel had depended on, and seen miraculous results from God, during their release from Egypt, during their years through the wilderness and in assuming their new homesteads in the Promised Land. So don’t you know that they could identify with the awesome provisions of the God that Isaiah referred to in our verse today? But as we meditate, I believe we must ask ourselves why it is that we find it so challenging to trust in what our ancestors endured, and was blessed by. Also, why is that we struggle with the thought that the same God who blessed us in our early years of Christianity, is the same God who healed us when we pleaded for His touch because doctors had reached their limitation with our illness. In fact, the same God who responded to simple things we asked for, such as safety while driving through a driving storm, or encouragement while feeling like we had reached the end of our ‘rope’ here on earth when we lost a loved one. We easily fail to reflect on these things when asking God for new problems or challenges, don’t we? Shouldn’t we first reflect on the awesome work shown by God in our past, or even the recent miracle wrought in the life of a fellow Christian, and then bow before Him in all sincerity and confidence, knowing that what He did before, He will gladly do it again for His special child? Friends, I believe for us to turn away in sadness and disbelief is like singing different words to the song ‘My God’s not dead, He’s still alive and well’; or attributing the past miracles to pure luck or just because a favorite church member asked for it. Notice the things that God said to Isaiah: I hope that you nor your people will ever be afraid, for I am with you. And oh, that also means that for all my children yet to be created and accepted by me, they too have nothing to be afraid of, for I stand by my children – in fact, I am with them at all times. Now please don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen each of you and help every one of you. I, the God of the entire universe, will hold you up with my powerful, victorious right hand, until I call you home to Glory to be with Me. Oh that we might always be reminded about who our God is, and that He is there for us, especially when we are struggling to keep the faith and keep our heads lifted high!
PRAYER: Thank You Lord for: creating us; for creating a wonderful world for us to live in and minister to others; for sending Your Son as our Savior and Lord to redeem us from our sin; and for giving us assurances that You are here with us and that You will strengthen and uphold us with Your all-powerful right hand! Please forgive us for hitting the panic button first, for worrying first, for looking at the crazy things of this life as impossible and overwhelming. You are still God, You are still looking out for Your own, and You will never break Your promise to always lift us up out of the mire and filth, for Your right hand will always be powerful and righteous. Lord, we stand in awe of You, for we are in need of You each and every day. Oh that Your work may be accomplished in us and through us while we are left on this earth. People still need the Lord. May they be encouraged to receive You and to lift Your name up high, by seeing how You fulfill Your purpose in our lives. AMEN!
FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog might indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. If you are anywhere near the Sebring, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would encourage you to visit my home church, Bible Fellowship Church, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!
Praise and Thanksgiving: I am in recovery from a very serious and intensive surgery on June 9th, and thanks to God Almighty and my readers, I am doing especially well. Each day is a journey, but I seem to feel stronger and more alert to seek God’s face; open His precious Word and read it with with a sense of clarity. I will try to continue as often as I could, but would ask that you pray extra hard for me over the next few weeks. I believe God wants His children to hear from Him and receive direction for the path He would have us take each day, so that He might work in the lives of those that we come into contact with. Be blessed Brothers and Sister as we continue to meditate together through this medium.