Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the Lord your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you. Deuteronomy 31:6
The man in Colonie, New York, was nearing the end of his business day.
He had gone to work; he had put in a full day at the office, and was just about ready to go home. That was when, around four o'clock, he received a call from his wife. Her call reminded him that he had forgotten to do something important.
No, he hadn't forgotten to pick up a loaf of bread, nor had he forgotten to take some letters to the post office. No, his forgetfulness was of a greater consequence than that. The man had forgotten to drop his one-year-old son off at daycare.
It's true. On a day when the temperatures didn't get above 15 degrees, the father had left his infant son in the car for eight hours. The boy was forgotten, unattended, uncared for. Now before I go any further in this devotion, I need to offer you the reassurance that the father immediately raced to his car, called for an ambulance, and had his child raced to the hospital. After a thorough checkup, I am pleased to report the boy suffered no ill consequences and is doing just fine.
This takes us to our text from Deuteronomy. In that verse God was speaking, and His words offer reassurance to His children. He promises, "Don't be afraid because I am going with you. I will not leave you or forsake you."
And He won't forget us either.
That, my friends is an incredible promise. When Adam and Eve turned their back on their Creator, He didn't leave or forsake them. Yes, God's justice called for their punishment, but the Lord's undeserved grace also promised a means of salvation. God hadn't forgotten or forsaken sinful humanity; on the contrary, He promised us a Savior.
Again and again, Scripture points out that God wants to keep His children safe and sound. When they wander, He invites them back. When they sin, He provides forgiveness. When they forget Him, He still remembers. Because of the successful sacrifice Jesus made to win our salvation, God's people know they are always loved, always protected, always remembered.
But suppose, because of some special circumstance, a person doesn't feel loved, protected or remembered?
In that case, dear friend, you can be sure that God hasn't gone anywhere. Your feelings of loneliness and lostness are the results of Satan's suggestions and not of God's rejection or refutation.
How do I know? Scripture clearly states, "He will never leave you or forsake you."
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, this world, my life, can be filled with darkness and sorrow. At such a time it is easy to believe we have been forgotten. Lord, grant us the grace to know that nothing is further from the truth. Your love and the Savior's sacrifice have guaranteed we are loved, forgiven, and we can trust You to take us through this time of darkness. This I pray in the Name of the Savior, who is my Light and Guide. Amen.
In Christ I remain His servant and yours,
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries