Encouragement

Kevin Ibanez

"Have I not commanded you?  Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go."  Joshua 1:9 NIV

Have you ever been afraid of something or someone?  I mean so fearful that you wanted to run away, hide, bury yourself or maybe you were just paralyzed and could literally do nothing except fearfully panic on the inside?  Many of us have been in this situation and feel hopeless and afraid, unable to do anything to overcome these feelings.

The great general and successor to Moses, the leader of the children of Israel who led the conquest of the Promised Land, Joshua experienced fear and hopelessness.  It was so bad that God told Joshua three times in Chapter 1 of Joshua to, “be strong and courageous!”  Wow, so if one of the greatest generals and leaders in the Bible struggled with this, what makes us think we are any better or different? 

What Joshua had was direct revelation from God the Father, he was spoken to by God and commanded to do what he was to do, knowing that God was with him.  We, too, have access to God through God the Holy Spirit’s indwelling presence in our lives, as well as in God’s inspired word, the Bible.  Through the Holy Spirit and the Bible, we can muster up all the strength and courage we need because it is God in us and His power and Word working through us.

Many times, we look around us and see that there are seemingly insurmountable obstacles in our lives and we begin to fear and lose heart.  Remember the words of Jesus as He spoke to His disciples before He ascended to heaven.  Jesus said in Acts 1:8 NIV, “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”  He also said that we had authority to go into all the world and make disciples, and that “surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age (Matthew 28:20b NIV).”

Therefore, as you encounter the challenges of parenting, jobs and careers, being a husband, wife, son, daughter, remember that God is with you, in you and through His power that, “we are more than conquerors through him who loved us  (Romans 8:37 NIV).”

 

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