The news and commentary was blaring in my face like an angry lion ready to pounce on it’s prey – and none of it was “good” news! ….Racial riots in North Carolina… Russia sends nuclear-capable bombers on mission near South Korea, Japan… State Department cautions tourists about violence in Cancun, Cozumel and more… and if that isn’t enough, there are the hate mongers that believe freedom of speech means they can say anything they want, to whomever they want, whenever they want. I have lived through 12 presidents of the United States and have never heard such hatred toward a president as this president faces on a daily basis.

“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.”

I was beginning to spiral downward in fear and despair wondering just how much more our nation can take, until the gentle whisper of the Holy Spirit reminded me of what the Creator of the Universe says: “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.” (Isa. 41:10)

Fear is a terrible thing to live with. Living in fear brings more fear. It compounds daily. Fear brings anger and anger brings despair, causing one to act and think irrationally. Despair quickly erodes hope, then the cycle starts all over again. And, if fear is not dealt with, it will eventually kill and destroy.

That is why the God of the Universe commands us to not fear. And I can choose to not live in fear because God promises to “be with me.” Someone once said, “Pastor, you know I am just not very strong.” I said, “why not? you have the God of the Universe living in you!”

We are also commanded, “don’t be discouraged.” I find that when I begin to be discouraged, it is often because I am listening to more news than I am to God’s word. When I begin to be fearful, it is often because I am more aware of the presence of my enemy than I am aware of the presence of God.

I can choose to not be discouraged because the God of the Universe says He will “strengthen me and help me.” Why would I want to live one day without the strength and help that comes directly from the hand of God?! And He declares that His hand is victorious!

Be encouraged today, my friend! God is greater!