September 14, 2021
The LORD is with me; I will not be afraid. What can mere mortals do to me? Psalm 118:6 NIV
Have you considered how many decisions we make in life that are primarily directed by fear—specifically fear of people and their reactions? We DON’T do things we want to do or should do because we fear what they will think. We DO things we don’t want to do and shouldn’t do because we fear what they will think. Actually, we fear what they will do, as well. Maybe they will reject us or turn others against us.
It can be something as trivial as what we wear, a car we drive, or a sports team we prefer. It can be something bigger, like a political or spiritual viewpoint. It can be a moral choice or an act of loyalty or disloyalty to others. It can be something most of us don’t give a second thought to, like remaining quiet when someone uses a racial slur or makes an inappropriate joke about another person. Each of us could make a very long list of the places our responses or lack of them have been determined by our fear of people.
Interestingly, though, the people who have impacted our lives for good are the ones who have not been controlled by fearful thoughts. They are the ones who were guided by their faith that God was with them, and this enabled them to act with integrity. They did what was right regardless of personal cost. They were not impacted by fear of people.
Your favorite Bible stories are all about people who said with their words and actions, “The Lord is with me; I will not be afraid. What can mere mortals do to me?”
Think Esther. “I will go, even though the king could kill me. If I perish, I perish.” She saved an entire nation.
Think Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. “The God we serve is well able to save us from the fiery furnace. And if He does not, He is still good. We will not bow.” They still inspire courage today.
Think Daniel. “I will still pray three times a day. I will not obey the king’s command, even though he is my friend. He is wrong.” He was thrown into the lion’s den and was saved to become the main advisor to the king.
Think Jesus. He chose consistently to love the people and do the things that made Him an enemy to the ones who could and did take His life. Yet He rose again to become the Savior of the world; yours and mine.
We can never be people of impact and integrity as long as we think thoughts of fear and intimidation. The Lord is with me—I will not be afraid. It’s my choice.
- Jesus, may what You think about me be the most significant thought that determines my actions.