“Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine.” (Isaiah 43:1)
Recently, when I was in San Anselmo, California, just over the Golden Gate Bridge from San Francisco, I had an interesting thing happen to me. San Anselmo is a small town like Mayberry, from television and one can even think of it like the play “Our Town.” It seems everyone knows everyone else, they say hello to you when they pass on the street, and, for those of us who live in a big city, it can seem like something out of another era. So, as I was walking down the main street one afternoon I suddenly had a very palpable sensation wash over me. I suddenly felt safe. This sensation even surprised me because I don’t ever remember having a conscious feeling of feeling unsafe. But suddenly I felt safe.
It is sad to me that we live in a world that causes us on a deep subjective level to have an undercurrent of fear. We may not think about being fearful all the time, but we do. Either because we watch the TV news and see the heinous things that occur in our world, or the very atmosphere we breathe has a vibration of turmoil.
My second thought, after suddenly feeling unfearful that afternoon, was to think about the book of Isaiah. At least thirteen times in this book we are told to “be not afraid,” or “fear not.” God understood then, and certainly does today, that God’s children can feel threatened by those in the world who have turned against God and against God’s teachings of unconditional love and acceptance.
“Fear not” is a recurring theme in Isaiah. I think that is one of the reasons I love this book so much. This prophet is reminding us over and over again that we are not to be worried or dismayed, that even in the darkest night, in the most turbulent storm, that God is right in that place with us. God is experiencing what we are experiencing. Because God is experiencing everything with us God understands what we need to feel safe once again. God knows our need, our concern and God knows just the perfect individual way to walk us through any dark time.
So, let Isaiah’s words of “fear not, for I am with you, be not dismayed, for I am your God,” be your comfort and strength this day and always.
Affirmation: “I do not fear, for God is walking right here with me every step of my journey. I trust in the promises of Spirit God.”
Rev. Jefferson Beeker
We live our lives one thought at a time. Let each of those thoughts really count for something wonderful.
Be prepared to change your thinking and change your life.
Follow me on Twitter @jeffersonbeeker