February 8

“And, lo, I am with you always.” Matthew 28:20

Never look ahead to the changes and challenges of this life in fear. Instead, as they arise look at them with the full assurance that God, whose you are, will deliver you out of them. Hasn’t He kept you safe up to now? So hold His loving hand tightly, and He will lead you safely through all things. And when you cannot stand, He will carry you in His arms.

Do not look ahead to what may happen tomorrow. The same everlasting Father who cares for you today will take care of you tomorrow and every day. Either He will shield you from suffering or He will give you His unwavering strength that you may bear it. Be at peace, then, and set aside all anxious thoughts and worries. (Streams in the Desert)

Fear is an alien emotion for the Christ-follower, or at least it should be. Don’t confuse fear and reverence. Scripture itself proclaims God doesn’t deal in fear. We honor God and hold Him sacred, and respond accordingly with utmost respect. Reverence induces all manor of beneficial things—humility, service, love, dependence, to name but a few. Fear, on the other hand, calls forth destructive thoughts and behavior; intimidation and insecurity are the norm for fearful hearts. The remedy for fear is revelation. When we discover God is love, and acknowledge the Father’s acceptance based on the finished work of His Son, we run toward Him rather than away from Him.

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