– Isaiah 41:10
Calms the Fear
My son and I once visited the Royal Gorge Bridge and walked on the bridge. I must admit, it’s a bit scary looking down almost one thousand feet. My son wouldn’t even budge until I took his hand. Only then did he walk on it. Did my holding his hand make the bridge stronger? Of course not, in fact, the bridge was technically a bit weaker by our walking on it, but when I took my young son’s hand, I calmed his fears enough for him to take that first step. See the application with our heavenly Father? Reach out and take His hand, and you won’t fear anymore, or at least as much as you did before. That’s because the Lord says, “I am with you” (Isaiah 41:10a).
Dampens the Dismay
God spoke to Israel through Isaiah the Prophet and wrote “be not dismayed, for I am your God” (Isaiah 41:10b). The word God uses is “dismayed” and this means to feel anxiety, distress, or fear. God knows our heart. He remembers we’re simply made of dust (Psalm 103:14), and so He has compassion on us. By the way, He doesn’t ask us, but tells us to not be dismayed, but He also tells us the reason why we don’t have to be dismayed; “I am your God,” and blessed is the man, woman, or child whose God is the Lord. Amen? Doesn’t it seem odd to you that God has to tell us tell us to not be dismayed? Remember my son on the bridge in paragraph one?
Strengthens the Feeble
I had stage fright when I was young. I still do today to some degree, but if I had realized then that God can “Strengthen the weak hands, and make firm the feeble knees” (Isaiah 35:3), and “Say to those who have an anxious heart, “Be strong; fear not” (Isaiah 35:4), I would have memorized those verses. Just think about Job, who endured such great suffering. He said of God, “Your words have upheld him who was stumbling, and you have made firm the feeble knees” (Job 4:4), and what words upheld Him? Today, we can find God’s Word in the Bible. His Word will strengthen the feeblest of knees and strengthen the weakest of hands, just as He says “I will strengthen you, I will help you” (Isaiah 41:10c).
Upholds the Weak
In our nursing home ministry, some of the nurses or nurse’s aides will hold up the elderly residents when seating them in the cafeteria or when moving them from the bed to a wheelchair. Many of these fine men and women are practicing “pure religion” (James 1:27), according to the Bible. In a similar fashion, God tells us that “I will uphold you with my righteous right hand” (Isaiah 41:10d). Speaking of being in His righteous hand, Jesus said of His own, “I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all, and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand” (John 10:28-29).
God never leaves us or forsakes us (Heb 13:5), so we have no reason to fear (Isaiah 41:10; Heb 13:6), therefore, dismay should be dismissed. We also strengthen our hands and firm our knees by the sheer power of the Word of God (Job 4:4), and this will uphold even the weakest of us. God will never let one slip through His mighty fingers (John 10:28-29). What shepherd would leave with 100 sheep and be satisfied if 99 made it back? Not our Good Shepherd! He loses none; not eve one (John 6:37-39)!