Years ago the picture on the front of a church bulletin depicted a lovely bird perched on the bough of a tree.
The sky was black and menacing, a streak of lightning pierced the darkness. Rain was falling, and yet the bird remained unperturbed at all these threats. A second glance revealed in another filmy layer the form of a large protective hand hovering over that vulnerable little bird, just like a large umbrella—representing the protective hand of God! Does God care about even a little bird? Indeed, the Bible tells us so, and then reminds us: “Do not fear therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows” (Matthew 10:31).
I remember that bird when I am surrounded with dark and menacing circumstances. That little bird symbolizes you and me—protected by the hand of God. As a sheltered child of God, His hand is over us and sifts what He allows us to experience. Scripture assures us of this comforting concept: “The angel of the LORD encamps all around those who fear Him, And delivers them“ (Psalms 34:7).
Knowing that we are divinely protected and provided for doesn’t lessen the intensity of our darkest moments when we are in crisis. That seems to be the time when fear assumes gigantic proportions. It is then that we can remind ourselves:
• God has no crises.
• God has no undefeated giants.
• God will not allow His children to be defeated.
Picture originally found here
It’s a matter of focus. If we indulge in prolonged looks at the fearful circumstances we are subject to sink into self-pity and depression. The spectre of the circumstances brings about paralyzing fear. Instead we can choose to look UPWARD to our Protector, our Master through His word, and seek His perspective and the comfort of His promises. The uplook is ALWAYS bright. Looking up and away from the darkness dispels the needless fears that accumulate.
There are hundreds of promises in Scripture admonishing us not to fear, but to trust in God instead. Here’s only one powerful example, with five promises in one text:
“Fear not, for I am with you;
Be not dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you,
Yes, I will help you,
I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.”
(Isaiah 41:10 NKJV)