“They helped every one his neighbour; and every one said to his brother, Be of good courage.” Isaiah 41:6 KJV
Times are difficult, challenging, and sometimes overwhelming these days. It’s the first pandemic most have been through! I remember growing up hearing how my great-grandmother died in the Spanish Flu epidemic in 1918. Her fourth child was just 4 months old. It was a terrible time. My great-grandfather was left with ten children to care for. Six children were from his first wife who died in childbirth after eight children. Yet life went on.
Part of the process in dealing with hard things is realizing you aren’t alone. God always sends in the cavalry through the help of friends, neighbors, and of course Himself. The Bible tells us in Isaiah 41:10:
“Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.”
I am reminded of the song, “You Are My Hiding Place”. Selah does a wonderful job singing this beautiful song of trust in the Lord. We are weak, we are afraid, but God always knows our circumstances. He has a plan for us the Bible says in Romans 8:28:
“And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.”
How can we despair when we know He has all things under control, even the hard and hurtful things of life? The Bible says the Holy Spirit prays for us in Romans 8:22-27!
“For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now. And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the first-fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body. For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for? But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it. Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. And he that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because he maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God.”
How can we feel powerless and hopeless when we know the Holy Spirit is praying on our behalf? We don’t have to rely on our own prayers. The Holy Spirit intercedes for us. If you’ve ever been speechless, wondering what to say, then take comfort in knowing the Holy Spirit knows our heart. He knows what we can’t say.
With the full assurance that we are backed up by our Lord and Savior and the Holy Spirit, we can move forward in life, no matter our circumstance. We need not fear. We walk by faith that whatever the outcome of our circumstances, He knows all about it. He will get us through it. We pray and seek knowledge and understanding of His will and of His way. We tell Him our concerns, and we have the assurance He hears.
You may be asking how do I get God on my side? What must I do to gain His help and favor in my life? The Bible says in Romans 10:9-10:
“That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.”
“For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” Romans 10:13
Believers know that when we call upon the Lord for help in times of need He always answers. He leads us to accept His will. We understand our will is not always aligned with His. Our faith in Him is based on His Word, the Bible. We know that His will is sovereign. We submit ourselves to Him as His children to a loving father. We trust Him.
It is for this reason alone we can say that we are of good courage and why we can say to our struggling neighbor, “be of good courage”.
Help your neighbor to understand the truth of God’s Word that they too might have the hope of eternal salvation from a loving and just God.
The Apostle Paul wrote these words to the Colossians:
“For this cause we also, since we heard it; do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God; Strengthened with all might, according to his glorious power, unto all patience and longsuffering with joyfulness; Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light: Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son: In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins: Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature: For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him: And he is before all things, and by him all things consist. And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence. For it pleased the Father that in him should all fulness dwell; And, having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself; by him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven. And you, that were sometime alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now hath he reconciled in the body of his flesh through death, to present you holy and unblameable and unreproveable in his sight” Colossians 1:9-22
God wants the same for each of us. The Apostle Paul wrote these words to the Romans:
“For none of us liveth to himself, and no man dieth to himself. For whether we live, we live unto the Lord; and whether we die, we die unto the Lord: whether we live therefore, or die, we are the Lord’s. For to this end Christ both died, and rose, and revived, that he might be Lord both of the dead and living.” Romans 14:7-9
We don’t need to worry about living or dying. We need to focus on our Lord, and do His will. Does that mean we act foolishly, throwing all caution to the wind? No, we must use wisdom and good judgment. We do not test or tempt our Lord to prove Him. We follow the leading of the Holy Spirit in all things as it is revealed to us.
“We then that are strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak, and not to please ourselves. Let every one of us please his neighbour for his good to edification.” Romans 15:1-2
Our call is to help one another as we are able. It might be to listen, to help, or to encourage to righteousness.