“Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”- Deuteronomy 31:6 (NIV84)
“I know who goes before me. I know who stands behind. The God of angel armies is always by my side.” – Chris Tomlin, “Whom Shall I Fear”
Every day I have some experience in my life that makes me even more grateful for the presence and work of God in my life. Usually these experiences happen on my job, but they also happen in traffic, at the grocery store, on campus, and many other places.
As I think on these situations and my response to them, my thought is usually something along the lines of, “Man, I’m SO glad I know Jesus, because if I didn’t I’d have totally handled that situation differently.” This is largely true- when I think of the ways that I handled situations prior to being saved, I shudder and shake my head. Of course now that I’ve been changed and that I know better, I do better.
But the truth is, I’m glad God promises not to leave me, because if He did, I would totally mess things up. I don’t know that I’d majorly mess things up, but I can definitely see myself getting into trouble, and having to call out to Him for help. I, by myself, handling situations on my own, am like the kid who gets left home alone before they are fully mature enough to handle it. Am I going to burn the house down? Probably not. Am I going to do something careless that could cause a big problem later? Maybe. Am I going to do something little, that by itself won’t be a big deal, but over time would be? Most likely.
The truth is, I need God to stay with me to save me from ME. And because I know that I need Him to save me from me, I’m glad that there’s the promise that He will always be there- because I’m always going to need Him to lead me, guide me, protect me, and save me. In the same way that I have yet to outgrow the need for my mother’s wisdom (even though I’m almost 30), I will never outgrow the need for God in my life. As I grow and mature, I still find that I’m my biggest challenge- or as I’ve heard it said elsewhere: “My greatest enemy is my inner me”. Sure, I’ll encounter challenges and obstacles in the world, but if I’m able to handle the internal, I’m confident that I can handle the external.
Be encouraged- God has promised not to leave you…which means He’s still there!
Peace and Blessings!