I wish the memories were not so vivid.
The heart-racing, paralyzing fear about… well, about nothing, and everything, all at the same time. There were particular triggers that would catapult me into an anxiety attack, but once I was there, fear’s Urusla-like tentacles would work their way into every nook and cranny of my mind.
Sometimes it took minutes, but more often it was hours, to calm my nervous system down and be able to speak truth, let alone believe it. Ben would come over to my apartment and slowly force my hands to release the death grip I was locked into.
For I am the LORD, your God, who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you.
And in those moments Ben treated me as God does, holding my hand and saying he was there, that I was okay, that he was helping me. He was courageous when I couldn’t be. It’s not that he wasn’t afraid – he was terrified at times. But he spoke of courage until I could grasp his calm instead of my chaos.
Some of the other posts are about taking courage, holding it close for your heart and life, finding that hope. So I wanted to bring a slightly different perspective. God cares about using humans to minister to other humans. If He didn’t, I don’t think Jesus would have BECOME a human. If someone in your life is needing to be courageous, but can’t seem to find their way, perhaps you are there to bring them that courage. Here’s some tangible ways we can apply from the verse in Isaiah:
- “For I am the Lord, your God” – You’re not the solution, God is. But he will use you as a conduit. Don’t try to solve the problem, seek God for the solution.
- “who takes hold of your right hand” – Touch is a powerful tool. When someone is afraid, stay close.
- “and says to you, Do not fear;” – Speak truth. Speak Scripture. Speak courage.
- “I will help you.” – Be willing to help as God leads and as your friend needs. Even if it ends up being nothing, your offer of help sometimes inspires the courage to move forward.
Have you ever been afraid? What allowed you to find courage again?