January 26, 2005
Encouragement for Today
The Strong Hand of the Lord
Wendy Pope, Speaker Team Member
"So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand." Isaiah 41:10 (NIV)
Today's key verse was first introduced to me by a dear friend who has since gone to be with her Lord. I heard her teach it and through her cancer, I saw her live it. I could not imagine that, even in death, she was not dismayed and she did not fear. I have discovered that I did not understand her strength in adversity because I did not know the "strong hand of Lord" that she did. I don't mean I wasn't a believer. Oh, I knew Christ as my Savior, but I had not chosen to make Him Lord of my life as she had.
Through her inspiring life and the power of the Holy Spirit living in me, I now know the "strong hand of the Lord." I recently came across my friend's favorite verse as I studied the Scripture. I enjoyed thinking of her and the example she was to me and to countless others. I read the scriptures following verse ten and the Holy Spirit painted for me a beautiful picture of how He holds His children during uncertain times.
In verse thirteen, the Lord says through the prophet Isaiah, "For I am the LORD, your God, who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, 'Do not fear; I will help you.'" I read the verse several times. I read verse ten again and followed it by reading verse thirteen. Then I saw it. A picture of His handing holding mine and oh, how awesome was the sight. Let me attempt to paint the picture for you.
The Lord will uphold us with His righteous right hand. (vs. 10) He also says He will hold our right hand. (vs. 13) It would be awkward to hold someone's right hand with your right hand unless that person is in front of you. Do you see it? Can you see the Savior looking into the eyes of his precious and hurting child, holding her right hand? Can you hear Him say, "Don't be dismayed. Do not fear."?
Are you hurting today? Do you tremble in fear? Are your dismayed at the turn your life has taken? Don't be. Your heavenly Father is waiting to look in your face and take your right hand in His strong right hand. He wants to lift you up, calm your fears and guide your future. Won't you let him?
My Prayer for Today:
Dear Father, my Abba, thank you for the promise of your right hand. I want so desperately to reach out to you. There are times that I have not reached out for you, but to another for help. Forgive me. Today I extend my hand to you, please take it. I trust you to carry me. Amen.
Sit alone with your Bible open. (If possible, in the warmth of the sun.)
Read Isaiah 41:10 aloud. Then pause.
Read Isaiah 41:13 aloud.
Read today's prayer again and personalize it with your immediate needs.
What is causing me to be dismayed?
Have I shared my concerns with the Savior? If not, why?
Do I know Christ as Savior and Lord?
What adjustments can I make in my life to make Him Lord?
"But you are a shield around me, O LORD; you bestow glory on me and lift my head. To the LORD I cry aloud, and he answers me from His holy hill." Psalm 3:3-4 (NIV)
"See, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands; your walls are ever before me." Isaiah 49:16 (NIV)
Who Holds the Key to Your Heart by Lysa TerKeurst
Coming Out of the Dark by Mary Southerland