Joshua 1:9 - (God said) "Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go."
When I was a little boy, my bedroom was paneled with knotty pine.
In the twilight, with the room lights out and the summer sun sliding over the horizon, those knots and stained shapes took on all kinds of strange monster faces—at least in the mind's eye of a four-year-old boy.
In the winter, when the snow reflected the moon's light, those shadows came alive. Today, I'm an old man, but those memories are still very much with me.
Just as vivid is the time when my father came to my bedside and asked, "Son, you don't have to be afraid since you've said your prayers. You do say your prayers at night, don't you?"
I assured him I did.
His next question was this: "And you do say your prayers in the morning, too? Right?"
I replied, "No, Dad, I don't have to. I'm not scared in the morning."
Now that I've grown up, I realize talking to God is not a once-a-day experience. The loving Lord most certainly wants to hear from me when I'm scared, but He also wants me to check in when things are going smoothly.
It's a sad thing, but many people still think of God as a refuge only when they're in trouble. They only speak to Him when their lives are filled with monster faces, terrific terrors, and they are frightened beyond imagination.
If you're one of these folks, may I, from my own experience, remind you that God hears you when your heart is filled with fear and trepidation (see Psalm 94:19 and Philippians 4:6-7). But He wants to hear from you at other times, too—even in the morning when you're not scared anymore.
Today, I encourage you to talk to the Savior who gave His life so you might live and so you might not be afraid. Jesus understands the things that bother and unsettle you. He wants you to lean on Him. In fact, He tells each of us plainly, "Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid" (John 14:27).
From childhood to old age, in darkness or daylight, Jesus is always with us.
THE PRAYER: Lord Jesus, thank You for being with me in times of joy as well as times of anxiety and uncertainty. You are concerned about my simplest needs and worries. To know You are my Savior and my Friend reminds me that I have nothing to fear. In Jesus' Name. Amen.
From "Being Scared," a devotion by Rev. Dr. Ken Klaus, former Speaker of The Lutheran Hour
1. What kinds of things kept you awake at night as a kid? Are there things that still do?
2. How does God give you courage when things are scary?
3. What do you say to someone who is frightened or on edge about something?