Theme: He Never Leaves You
|Pastor Chris Oyakhilome PhD, DSC, DD|
Have not I commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the LORDthy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest (Joshua 1:9).
The scripture above was God’s message to Joshua, as he led the children of Israel through the wilderness. God said to him, “Be not afraid.” Why? Because there were frightful experiences in his way. But God said, “Be not afraid.” Then He took it further; He said, “…neither be thou dismayed.” When things begin to look like you’ve been defeated, don’t be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you. What an assurance!
Many years ago, I heard a story that’s remained indelibly on my mind. A Pastor told a story of how God visited a certain man in a vision. As he and the Lord walked together, the Lord assured him “I am with you no matter how difficult the journey may be.” Though he couldn’t see the Lord, he could see the footprints. As they journeyed, there were two different footprints so, he was sure the Lord was with him. Every now and then, he looked and saw the Lord’s footprints, and kept going.
At a point, things got tougher and harder. Then he looked, but this time saw only one footprint! He cried and said, “Lord, where are you? Things are worse here! How could you leave me now that I need you the most?” Then he heard the voice of God, “I’m still here.” But the man said, “No, I was seeing your footprints all along; but you’ve stopped. All I see now are my footprints.” Then God said, “No, the footprints that you see aren’t your footprints; they’re mine, because I’m now carrying you.”
What a soul-stirring response from the Lord! How loving our God is! Even when we’re not aware, and it looks like He’s left us, He’s there. The man was crying because he thought he was alone. But God was carrying him. He has said, “…I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee” (Hebrews 13:5). At the most difficult part of the journey, He’ll carry you. Those times you look around and don’t seem to find any sign of His presence, the Lord is there with you. He’ll never leave you nor forsake you; even when everyone else deserts you, He’s always with you. So, be encouraged; be strengthened, and be full of joy. The Lord your God is with you, and He lives in you. You’re never alone!
Precious and loving Father, thank you for your love and faithfulness. You’re gracious, compassionate and kind. I’m strong and very courageous in the power of your might; I’ll never be weary. Thank you for your grace and everlasting presence. I adore you with all my heart. Amen.
Isaiah 49:15 Can a woman forget her sucking child, that she should not have compassion on the son of her womb? yea, they may forget, yet will I not forget thee.
Hebrews 13:5 [Let your] conversation [be] without covetousness; [and be] content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.
Deuteronomy 31:6 Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the LORD thy God, he [it is] that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.