Don’t give way to fear today. The Lord almighty is your Savior, and he is with you in whatever you’re facing and wherever you go.
The apostle Paul is in Athens, waiting to make connections with fellow travelers, and is so moved by what he sees and hears there that he can’t resist injecting God into the conversation. Listen to his words:
So Paul, standing in the midst of the Areopagus, said: “Men of Athens, I perceive that in every way you are very religious. For as I passed along and observed the objects of your worship, I found also an altar with this inscription, ‘To the unknown god.’ What therefore you worship as unknown, this I proclaim to you. The God who made the world and everything in it, being Lord of heaven and earth, does not live in temples made by man, nor is he served by human hands, as though he needed anything, since he himself gives to all mankind life and breath and everything. And he made from one man every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth, having determined allotted periods and the boundaries of their dwelling place, that they should seek God, and perhaps feel their way toward him and find him. Yet he is actually not far from each one of us, for
“‘In him we live and move and have our being’;
as even some of your own poets have said,
“‘For we are indeed his offspring.’” (Acts 17:22–28)
There are two things that should calm our fears. The first is the incredible truth that Paul speaks to the Athenians. Paul announces that the God who is in control of everything that exists, even down to the exact address where we live, has decided to rule his world so that he is so near to all of us that any moment we could reach out and touch him. God is always near and always reachable.
But more needs to be said. Yes, it is true that as Sovereign, God is near in power and rule, but it must also be said that as Savior, he is near in presence and grace. As Sovereign, he rules over all the situations, locations, and relationships that may cause me fear, but as Savior, he is rescuing, empowering, and transforming me by grace. Because God is my Sovereign, my life is never out of control, and because he is my Savior, he blesses me with everything I need to live in the middle of things that are beyond my control. He is a sovereign Savior, which means I don’t need to fear, because he is with me and he provides everything I need for the places where his plan leads me. He rules, and he graces me with everything I need to live inside his rule with peace, hope, and courage. Why, then, should I fear?
For further study and encouragement: Isaiah 41:1–20
Taken from New Morning Mercies: A Daily Gospel Devotional by Paul Tripp, © 2014, pp. 132-162. Used by permission of Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers, Wheaton, IL 60187, www.crossway.org.