As a mom, the words "Do not!" come out of my mouth often.
Do not forget to put down the toliet seat! Do not leave your clothes on the floor!
Do not eat the dog food! Do not pick your nose!
We moms know we mean business when the words "Do not" come out of our mouths. This analogy is what I thought of when I read the verse above.
God is our heavenly Father and just like we earthly parents tell our kids "Do not" for their own good, He tells us "Do not" for our benefit. But, do we listen?
"Do not fear; I am with you;"
The great "I AM" is with us. We don't have to fear because He has promised to never leave us nor forsake us. His presence is always with us.
I remember a time when my daughter, Sarah, was attempting something new and she was afraid she would fall. I told her "Don't be afraid. You can do this, and I am right here to catch you." She continued to go across. She kept her eyes on me, she knew I was right there with her and she made it across. We need to keep our eyes on Jesus to make it across. What we keep our eyes on determines our reaction. I looked up the word "anxious" in the Hebrew in the next part of this verse and I found it very interesting.
When we are anxious, discouraged, or dismayed, it is because our gaze has turned away from our heavenly Father. We have looked away from Him and set our eyes on our circumstances, problems, or fears.
"I will strengthen you and help you."
He is our God. When we keep our eyes on Him, we can remain steadfast, secure, and courageous. We can be full of faith that our Father will safely help us to the other side.
"I will hold you up with My victorious right hand."
We don't have to be afraid of the path ahead. In fact, God says, "Do not fear". God will lead us steady and strong and He will hold us up. We can move forward in faith knowing that we will not fall. We are victorious in Him. We will make it to the other side. Just keep your eyes on Jesus and do not fear.
"You will keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts in You." Isaiah 26:3
Do not fear. Just trust.