Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze. ~ Isaiah 43:1b-2
Growing up on a small farm in rural Canada, I recall one haying season back in the day before round balers and even bale throwers were in vogue.
One hot summer day my grandpa drove the tractor, baler and wagon and my dad and uncle loaded the wagon by hand. Like fifty pound lego bricks the dried grass was formed into a large rectangle shape and stacked one on top of the other. Soon the wagon became so full that I had to climb up and sit on top of the bales some fifteen feet high from the ground.
I remember this one time in particular resting quietly atop of the towering mound of hay. I felt on top of the world — until the realization sunk in that there was no easy way down.
I was so scared to climb down that I anxiously started shaking. I feared falling to my death!!
Then my dad came along the side of the loaded wagon. He looked up at me with care and summoned me to start climbing down. He promised to catch me if I fell. I cried out him. “Dad, I can’t do this.” My chin quivered.
“Scott. Don’t be afraid. You’re not going to fall, I’ve got you!” he affirmed.
Somehow, in spite of the fear and shaking, I mustered up the courage to start scaling down the side of the wagon inch by inch. Then I felt my dad’s strong hands grip my feet and legs. A comfort came over me so I let go and fell into his arms. He gently placed me on the ground feet first. I let out a sigh of relief and wiped away the tears from my eyes. I was safe. Dad rescued me.
It is this redeeming experience that reminds me of our Heavenly Father. He doesn’t want us to fear the seemingly impossible situation we face, because it is He who summons us by name and promises to rescue us. It is He who in His son Jesus saves us from sin and the fall.
Just as God was faithful to take the children of Israel through the impossible waters of the Red Sea and through the flooding rivers of the Jordon, He promises to preserve his children no matter how hot the furnace of life’s tests and trials may become.
So, my friends do not be afraid. Remember all that God has done for you! Look how far He has brought you! You are His! Whatever you face, whenever you struggle, wherever He leads you remember that God loves you and has called you and will keep you. Trust Him!
~ Dr. Scott