Back in the mid-nineties, I experience one of the darkest days of my life one spring afternoon. I received a phone call from my sister that my grandmother had suffered a major heart, She had been taken to the hospital by mother and family and was not doing well. Shortly after receiving that call, my sister called back a few hours later to tell me some additional news that made things go from bad to worse. Our mother while at the hospital concerned about our grandmother’s health condition had suddenly suffered a brain aneurysm.
As I made preparation to come home to Detroit to see about my mother and grandmother, I received more troubling news that my mother’s condition had gotten worse. The following day after mother’s being hospitalized, she had suffered a severe stroke that caused her to fall into of coma. When I finally made it home from New York, my mother was still in of coma and it did not look like she was going to make it. I checked on my grandmother who was in the same hospital and her health condition had started to get better but she still had a long road to recovery.
All I could remember during that time was the fear that I felt that the two most important women in my life could possibly die the same day. I was constantly battling thoughts in my mind wondering would this be the final time I would spend with them and never get a chance to tell them that I loved them. The only defense that I had against the onslaught of thoughts of uncertainty, worry, and fear was to speak the promises of God to myself. Over the next few days as I kept standing on the word of God, my mother and grandmother health improved and they both got better. My grandmother a week later would be released from the hospital to go home and continue to make a full recovery. My mother on the other hand, because of her brain aneurysm and stoke would cause her to go into rehab to regain strength in part of her body that was affected. I was able to overcome the fear that my love ones would die because the Lord presence was with me. The Lord was my God and He was greater than sickness and disease and would uphold my family with his right hand of righteousness.
Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness (Isaiah 41:10).
Fear not for I am with you
According to dictionary.com the word fear can be described as “a distressing emotion aroused by impending danger, evil, or pain”. The word fear can also be described as a person “being threatened by something that is real or imagined”. However, these definitions of fear that dictionary.com has given would not be a true description of what fear really is in a person life. The Apostle Paul tells us in 2 Timothy 1:7 and Romans 8:16 tells us that fear is a spirit and it has the ability to put a person into bondage. If allowed fear has the ability to paralyze a person emotionally causing them to be afraid to not make decisions regarding there life. If not put in check, fear in a person life can rob a person of opportunities to learn new life skills and discover hidden abilities that they have on the inside of them. If a person has had a traumatic experience or suffered multiple disappointments, fear could cause the person to hide in a shell not wanting to come out and try again.
The words fear not appear in the Old Testament forty-seven times in the bible when it is spoken by the Lord to man or man speaking to God’s people. In the New Testament of the Bible, the words fear not appear seventeen times when it is spoken by angels or the Lord Jesus to men. What is the message that the Lord is saying to you and me throughout those sixty-four times in the word of God regarding fear? The message that the Lord is saying to us is to fear not because His presence is with us and He is our God. What got me through that dark moment of my mother and grandmother almost dying the same day was the Lord assurance that He had the situation in control. Our family was not going through this major crisis alone because we had the presence of the Lord keeping them and keeping me from falling apart. In Psalms 46:1, the word of God says “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble”.
I will strengthen and help you
In our world today there are so many troubling things happening in the lives of people. According to the Bureau of Labor of Statistics, the unemployment rate which is 4.1 percent is the lowest in eight years since 2010/2011 when the unemployment rate at the time was over 9.0. However, according to the Bureau of Labor of Statistics, the total number of people in 2017 which were unemployed was 8,776,000. It is being said by politicians in Washington D.C that the creation of jobs are on the rise but yet there are still thousands of people who cannot find work who have a Master or Doctoral degree. We hear on the political talk shows about the imperfection of our current Healthcare system and why it needs to be replaced so all people in this country can have affordable healthcare. However, there are several people who have some type of pre-existing condition that insurance companies are pushing to have the cost to go up so those with these conditions cannot afford to have health coverage. There are immigrants who come to this country with the dreams of having a new life for themselves and their family. However, because of the political agendas of men those dreams that immigrants have are being threatened by people in Washington because they are out of touch with the one who made our country great.
When we are confronted with overwhelming circumstances, we should determine that the help that we need cannot be found in our own strength or with our own human efforts. In Isaiah 41:10 the word of God let us know about the three I wills of the Lord on how He has promised to us. The first I will promise that the Lord has declared to us is that “I will to strengthen you. The second I will promise that the Lord has promised us that “He will be our help that we need”. Our God’s will is greater than our human will and what He promises to do for us, He will make sure it will happen for us in His timing. If our need is financial, the Lord will strengthen and help us so that “all of our needs are met by His riches in glory in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:19). If our need is healing, the Lord will strengthen and help us because “He has sent His word to heal us”(Psalms 107:20). If we are in need of a breakthrough for new opportunities, though man may say no, the Lord will yes because He is the one who strengthen and help us.
I will uphold you with my right hand
All of us at one time have a day where we woke up and felt that we were going to have a great day. However, when we went outside to start our car we saw that either our tire had been slashed or our car had been keyed. We may have been driving on the parkway stuck in bumper to bumper traffic and then out of nowhere, our car is rear-ended. We may have also look to make a purchase with our debit card and we learned that our card has been compromised because someone has committed fraud against us. You finally make it home and your wife is stressed out about different things and wants you to listen to her vent for thirty minutes. You asked yourself, why is this happening to me and why does it feel like the Lord is silent? Your blood pressure is up and you are fighting with yourself not to lose it by giving a disrespect person a piece of your mind.
In Luke 21:26 the word of God says that “Men’s hearts will fail them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken”. When we see things are falling apart around us, we need not look at what is happening to us but to look to the one who upholds all things by the word of His power (Hebrews 1:3). If things are not working out to the expectations that we have, we must not be discouraged because our God can work all things together for our good (Romans 8:28). If we feel that we don’t have enough time to accomplish the things we desire to do, our God is not controlled by time because our times are in His hands (Psalms 31:15). I encourage you my brother do not allow fear which is false evidence appearing to be real to rob you of your God-given dreams and desires He has planted in your heart. The third I will promise that the Lord has made to us from Isaiah 41:10 is that “He would uphold us with His right hand of righteousness”. The Lord commands me and you this day to fear not because our lives are in His hands and He has a hope and a future for us (Jeremiah 29:11). Fear not my sister, your God is with you, fear not my brother because the Lord is your God.