Tuesday, July 16, 2019

Spiritual State of Mind

Psalm 25:16  "Turn to me and be gracious to me, for I am lonely and afflicted."

Isaiah 41:10  "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."

         Today's blog is about what our spiritual state of mind is and how to benefit from it.  We have all experienced a state of loneliness, regardless of whether we have many friends or very few.  Being alone and being lonely are two very different things.  You can be alone in a room and be fully content but you can also be in a crowded room and feel completely alone.

        "The loneliest moment in someone’s life is when they are watching their whole world fall apart, and all they can do is stare blankly.” 

        As for myself, I can completely identify with the quote just above.  I've had life moments where I've just had to roll with the punches and the flow of life.  There was nothing I could do, but trust God and His Word that "He works all things for good, for those that love Him."  Being humans, we will all experience times of loneliness. But Jesus helps us understand that we always have the presence of the Father with us. God is omnipresent and eternal. Only He can be with us all the time, for all time.

       "The world constantly changes; it is never constant except in its disappointments. How quickly we may move our lodgings and make our pillow in the dust! The world is but a great inn where we are to stay a little night or two, and then be gone. What madness it is so to set our heart upon our inn - as to forget our eternal home! [ Thomas Watson]
       "The One who loves us perfectly is in full control, working everything out according to His good purpose. Knowing this should fill us with hope, even in the midst of crisis situations. The Lord even promises to turn disaster to good for those who “are called according to His purpose” (Rom. 8:28)."  [ F. Scott Fitzgerald]

        “We can say with Romans 8:28 that God uses all things for the good of those who love him, even our loneliness, because our loneliness leads us to our deepest spiritual need, who is Christ. And we can also say with 1 John 3:20 that, even when we feel condemned, God is greater than our hearts and that loneliness cannot separate us from the love of God (Romans 8:38–39). We have a solution to our spiritual problem, and if we will submit to the Lord and accept his solution for our deepest spiritual problem, the atoning work of Christ on the cross, God can attack loneliness at its root and overcome the pain of separation in our lives that leads to separation from him, which leads to separation from other people.” [odb.org]

       “Loneliness is a wilderness, but through receiving it as a gift, accepting it from the hand of God, and offering it back to him with thanksgiving, it may become a pathway to holiness, to glory and to God himself” (Elisabeth Elliot).

        “The wilderness is that season of our lives where God, through our loneliness, teaches us that his will is to do something in us, not merely do something for us. That is, by walking by faith and not by sight, he works in us a stronger faith, leading to a deeper worship that results in a greater joy.”

       “Loneliness is seeking to run from the presence of people and the pressures of life, and to withdraw from reality, but aloneness is experiencing the reality of God’s presence, running into the hiding place, not so you can just escape, but so you can enjoy God’s presence.  The hiding place can be viewed as that place or season in our lives when we run from people and circumstances, feel that the world is against us, and embrace loneliness only to encounter God, learn that he is for us, and therefore experience true aloneness.”  [P. Matthies]

       As you finish reading this blog, I hope you see loneliness with a new perspective.  To see it more as an opportunity to draw closer to God and bring Him to others.  "There is no deeper sadness that ever comes over the mind than the idea that we are alone in the world, that we do not have a friend, that no one cares for us, that no one is concerned about anything that might happen to us, that no one would care if we were to die or shed a tear over our grave.  Whatever the cause of loneliness, for the Christian the cure is always the same—the comforting fellowship of Christ. He is the friend who “sticks closer than a brother” (Proverbs 18:24), who lays down His life for His friends (John 15:13-15), and who has promised never to leave us or forsake us but to be with us until the end of the age (Matthew 28:20). We can take comfort in the words of the old hymn that says it best: “Friends may fail me, foes assail me, He is with me to the end. Hallelujah, what a Savior!”" [gotquestions.org]


Saturday, July 6, 2019

The World Changes, God Does Not

1 John 2:15-17  

Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world—the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride in possessions—is not from the Father but is from the world. And the world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever.

Romans 12:2 

Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.

Psalm 136:1

 "Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good.  His love endures forever."

Philippians 3:8

  "I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord."

         Today's blog is about how we must follow our unchanging God and not the ever-changing world.  I'm sure it's true with all generations, but I am amazed and shocked by how much the world I live in has changed in my short lifetime.  The wickedness of our culture in values, morals, tolerance, and behavior is flabbergasting and the acceptance of it is worrisome.  We live in a throw-away society, where very few things remain lasting; marriages, jobs, family ties, and the golden rule of treat others how you want to be treated.  We do have a safe, unchanging place to go to, Jesus Christ.  "In the darkest hours of life, only through the eyes of faith can we see the loving hand of God." [ odb.org]
         Even when we feel discouraged and disconnected from God, we can remember that He will help us advance in our faith by making us more like His Son. His Word assures us that “He who has begun a good work in [us] will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ” (Phil. 1:6). [odb.org]

         "One reason we stop following God’s plan is the influence of our culture. Ungodly people are always ready to give believers advice, and too often we find the world’s methods and “wisdom” attractive. Divine direction is needed if we are to set ourselves apart from nonbelievers’ thinking and yet stay close enough to be able to share God’s viewpoint and message of hope with them."  [intouch.org]

Our unchanging God, however, has promised that His loving mercy endures forever. In Psalm 136, the singer celebrates this wonderful promise by making statements about God’s wonder, work, and character. He then punctuates each statement about God with the phrase, “For His mercy endures forever.” Whether it is the wonder of His creation (vv.4-9), the rescue of His people (vv.10-22), or His tender care for His own (vv.23-26), we can trust Him because His mercy will never fail. In a temporary world, the permanence of God’s mercy gives us hope. We can sing with the psalmist, “Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever” (v.1). [odb.org]

          Our trust is also strengthened by God's inviolable, steadfast, never-failing faithfulness. God's goodness inclines him to make his promises, and his faithfulness engages him to keep them. If the Word has once gone out of his mouth, heaven and earth shall pass away sooner, than one iota of it will fail (Luke 21:33). God in faithfulness will make good his promises. He never has and never will fail the man who puts his trust in him (Psalm 9:10). - Thomas Lye

         It’s not our responsibility to change our culture. Only the power of God through the gospel can do that!  We are good—and we please God—when our hope and faith are in Christ alone, not in our goodness.

Christ frees us from the penalty
And power of our sin,
And He will change society

As hearts are changed within. —Sper

I sing of mercies that endure,
Forever builded firm and sure,
Of faithfulness that never dies,
Established changeless in the skies. —Psalter

God’s grace is immeasurable; His mercy inexhaustible; His peace inexpressible.

Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Faith Over Fear

Proverbs 14:15 "The simple believe anything, but the prudent give thought to their steps."

Proverbs 15:22  "Plans fail for lack of counsel, but with many advisers they succeed."

Proverbs 19:21  "Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails."

Proverbs 14:26   "In the fear of the Lord there is strong confidence." 

       Today's blog stems from Proverbs 19:21.  Many of us have a plan for our lives from a young age, but as we know that's not always how it goes.  If we seek godly advice and listen to God's nudging voice, we can fulfill both our desires and God's purposes in our lives.

       "Our way is the path of human wisdom and self-reliance. It leads to frustration and emptiness. God’s way involves trusting Him, obeying Him, and depending on Him. It leads to satisfaction and joy—in part on earth but fully in heaven. Each day let’s choose to live God’s way."  [odb.org]

       Matthew 10:28  “Do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. But rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell” 

       "This verse dissolves fear and gives courage to those who accept it. Deep in their hearts they realize that even if the Lord allows the enemy to destroy their physical life they will lose only what is keeping them from enjoying the presence of their Savior in heaven." M.Henry]  

       We must trust in God's sovereignty, even when things don't turn out as one might have  envisioned.  Whatever your dreaming for, believing for, and hoping for, I pray you keep trusting, hoping and believing in God's plan and acknowledge that it's not about you and your perfect plan, but it's up to God and His purpose will prevail.

       As for myself, my plan from 10th grade was to be a pharmacist.  Well a dilemma came up, when my plans after 2 years of college included marriage.  There was no pharmacy school where I was moving to. I changed my plans/major to microbiology and my future plans went in the right direction towards a job I could actually do.  My fears of Chicago winter weather, failure to finish, and my physical challenges didn't deter my goals for myself.  God saw me and blessed me greatly for my will and His.

3 Things to Remember To Go From Fear to Faith in Your Goals

1] Let go of your comfort
2] Accept that failure happens to everyone
3] Remember God's goodness and sovereignty

Fear God and you will have nothing else to fear.

Sunday, June 16, 2019

Happiness, Disobedience and God

John 15:9-11 “As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love.  If you keep my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commands and remain in his love. I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete."

John 15:14-16 "You are my friends if you do what I command.  I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you. You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit—fruit that will last—and so that whatever you ask in my name the Father will give you."

1 Corinthians 6:17 "But whoever is united with the Lord is one with him in spirit."

       Today's blog is about how God sees us and who we are to Him.  James 4:4 says, "You adulterous people, don’t you know that friendship with the world means enmity against God? Therefore, anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God."  I think many in this world think they are right with God, and yet choose to live by the ways of the world.  This verse in James says that can't be so. "You can’t say you love Jesus and then go live like the devil. You can’t say you’re a Christian and then keep on living a self-centered life. You can’t say you’re a follower of Jesus and then pick and choose the verses that you want to listen to and ignore the ones you don’t. Jesus says you’re his friend if you obey him and his commandments.". Unbelievers are enemies of God and rebel against His ways and Word of Truth.  Matthew Henry says, "Christ takes believers to be his friends. He visits them and converses with them as his friends, bears with them and makes the best of them, is afflicted in their afflictions, and takes pleasure in their prosperity; he pleads for them in heaven and takes care of all their interests there."

       Many people think that being a Christian is a pathway to a loss of fun and happiness on this Earth.  Not true!  Jesus changes your desires.  Ungodly desires may look like freedom, but they don’t last, and they lead to despair, not dignity and depression, not delight.

      We choose to obey God because he loves us, saves us and wants the best for us.  His loves leads us to true joy.  "We must place our happiness in the continuance of Christ’s love to us, and make it our business to give continued proofs of our love to Christ, that nothing may tempt us to withdraw from him, or provoke him to withdraw from us. Note, All that love Christ should continue in their love to him, that is, be always loving him, and taking all occasions to show it, and love to the end. " [M. Henry]

      If you’re not living a full and satisfying life, it’s not because God doesn’t want you to have it. He wants to set you free from: [R. Warren]
  • The pain from your past. This is the regret or resentment that keeps you from being all God wants you to be.
  • The pressures of your present. This is the stress or exhaustion you face trying to manage the complexities of everyday life.
  • The pessimism about tomorrow. These are the worries about your future or the futures of those you love.

       If you’re not living a full and satisfying life with God as your center, also consider the consequences of disobedience on your life: [intouch.org]
  • You will never become the person that God wants you to be.
  • You limit your usefulness to the Lord.
  • You are willing to live a life of rationalized disobedience.
  • You’ll be governed by fear rather than faith.
  • You risk losing not only rewards in heaven but also blessings on earth.
Are you in some way refusing God’s call? The Lord is trustworthy. Whatever His plan of action for you, be assured He will see you safely through the ordeal.

Thursday, June 6, 2019

Getting Through Each Day

          Some days can be harder than others, but what keeps us going through it?  Is it our will power, drive or something bigger than ourselves?  "Our humility springs from our preparedness to say 'O Lord, I am totally dependent upon you today.'" [Alistair Begg]  "While there are no guarantees of surefootedness in the physical sense, there is One who stands ready to assist us in our quest to honor Christ in this life and prepare us to stand joyfully before Him in the next." [odb.org]

Underneath the restless surface
Of each trial that comes in life
Flows the Savior’s love and power—
They can calm our inner strife. —D. De Haan

          What is sustaining grace? Sustaining grace is the power to keep on going when you feel like giving up. It’s the power to do the right thing, when you don’t feel like doing the right thing. There are many pitfalls in the marathon race of life. But regardless of what you go through, no matter what you face this year, you can count on God’s sustaining grace. “My purpose in writing is to encourage you and assure you that what you are experiencing is truly part of God’s grace for you. Stand firm in this grace” (1 Peter 5:12)

        "Every day we face temptations (and even false teachings) that seek to divert us, confuse us, and entangle us. Yet, it’s not ultimately through our own efforts that we remain on our feet as we walk in this world. How assuring to know that when we hold our peace when tempted to speak angrily, to opt for honesty over deceit, to choose love over hate, or to select truth over error—we experience God’s power to keep us standing (Jude 1:24). And when we appear approved before God when Christ returns, the praise that we offer now for His sustaining grace will echo throughout eternity (v. 25)." [odb.org]

        As for myself, I may seem strong but I'm also human with depressed thoughts and moments at different times.  I, too, need encouraging quotes like, “It is I, your Savior, who has brought this experience into your life to show you [that] this is the kind of person—with all your sinful thoughts and temptations which you thought were things of the past—that you always will be, but for My grace.”  It is by His sustaining grace and new mercies each day that I can face and get through each day.  Galatians 5:25  "Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit."  The Holy Spirit provides  the grace that meets us at our point of need and equips us with courage, wisdom, and strength.  Sustaining grace promises not the absence of struggle but the presence of God.  I know I need that kind of love from God.

Though tempted and sadly discouraged,
My soul to this refuge will flee
And rest in this blessed assurance:
"My grace is sufficient for thee."

Friday, May 31, 2019

Known For What?

         What do you want to be known for now and/or after you've passed on?  Is it your earthly accomplishments, your wealth, your fame, your philanthropy, your success, your family, or your faith?   "From God’s perspective it’s not our resumé or the amount of money we’ve accumulated that matters but rather the kind of life we have lived."
         I think it's sad when loved ones scramble at the end of a loved one's life to know what to say at their funeral.  Your life should be representative of something, and it is good or bad.  The dash [-] is the symbol of your life on your tombstone, so make it stand for something more than time passed.  
         The average human gets around 25 thousand days on this earth. That's it. This life is a breath. Heaven is coming fast, and we live in that thin space where faith and obedience have relevance. We have this one life to offer; there is NO second chance, no plan B. We get one shot at living to expand the kingdom, fighting for justice. We will stand before Jesus once, and none of our luxuries will accompany us. We'll have one moment to say, "This is how I lived".
         As for myself and what inspired this blog, my parents and I went to eat dinner at IHOP last Friday night.  As we were leaving, a lady in the restaurant said "I know you, Angie!"   With a puzzled look on my face, I said "Really??'  She turned out to be a friend of my friend, Beth.  She knew me because of my blog and complimented me on it and my faith.  Wow!  Yes, please know me now and forever as the daughter of the King and his strength that helped me overcome this world and its struggles.

       "You are not defined by anything that happened to you or anything you've done. You are defined by who you are in Christ. (Beth Moore)

       Proverbs 22:1  "A good name is more desirable than great riches;
    to be esteemed is better than silver or gold."

        "All of us are writing a story with our lives—one that affects others now and in the future. Are we living to please God? We don’t know when the Lord will call us Home. Let’s live every day with an eye on the harvest." [odb.org]

Only the truth that in life we have spoken,
Only the seed that on earth we have sown;
These shall pass onward when we are forgotten,
Fruits of the harvest and what we have done. —Bonar

A fruitful harvest requires a faithful life.

O keep up your courage, each day to the end;
Go forth in the strength of the Lord;
Trust wholly in Jesus, thy Savior and Friend,
And feed on His own blessed Word. —Miles

Sunday, May 19, 2019

Peace in the Valleys of Life

John 14:27  " Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid."

       Today's blog is about having personal peace within ourselves despite the chaos and circumstances around us.  Each of us have either come out of a hard valley or are in the midst of one or are about to face one and don't know it yet.  Life has it's moments of mountain tops, but we don't live there continuously.  The steep climb or descent is not an easy journey for any of us.  God sent the Holy Spirit to live within us, as believers, and be our guide during these difficult times.  John 14:16-17  " And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever— the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you."

     In the verse above John 14:27, "He wasn’t saying that all their conditions would be serene, easy, and comfortable. On the contrary, He was telling them they would have peace of mind and heart even though their circumstances were painful, difficult, and uncertain. And this is the same kind of peace Jesus promises to all of us who belong to Him." [intouch.org]  As believers, we can have peace by knowing and trusting in God's control and that He is working things out for our good.

     True peace comes from having a relationship with Jesus, a togetherness or oneness with him.  Any other source of peace is faulty, fraudulent, counterfeit and not everlasting.  If you don't have Jesus as your Lord and Savior, you will never have peace.  You will have fear, doubt, anxiety, needless worry, and uncertainty.  We are called to be followers of the Prince of Peace, Jesus.  As followers, we are not to just enjoy the gift of peace but to be peacemakers in the world around us.

     Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me” (Psalm 23:4 NIV).   That verse resonates the kind of peace God wants to give to us.  Even tho, we may be in the worst situation of our life, we trust God to carry us through it, even death.  These valleys of life  are often a metaphor for difficult times, times of darkness, despair, defeat, or discouragement.

3 Things to Remember About the Valleys of Life [R.Warren]

Wednesday, May 8, 2019

Loved By God

John 10:14-15  " “I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me— just as the Father knows me and I know the Father—and I lay down my life for the sheep."

      "Sheep are essentially defenseless animals, so a shepherd uses a few tools to care for and protect his sheep. He uses a rod for guarding and protecting and a staff with a little crook in it to rescue the sheep.  We are like lost sheep, so Jesus came to Earth to be our Good Shepherd." 
          This blog is about how much God loves us, cares for us, directs our paths, protects us and never forsakes us.  Below are some resources I've found to show us His love by examples and use of scriptures.

'Every once and a while, a ewe will give birth to a lamb and reject it. There are many reasons she may do this. If the lamb is returned to the ewe, the mother may even kick the poor animal away. Once a ewe rejects one of her lambs, she will never change her mind.
These little lambs will hang their heads so low that it looks like something is wrong with its neck. Their spirit is broken. These lambs are called “bummer lambs.” Unless the shepherd intervenes, that lamb will die, r
ejected and alone.
So, do you know what the shepherd does? He takes that rejected little one into his home, hand-feeds it and keep it warm by the fire. He will wrap it up with blankets and hold it to his chest so the bummer can hear his heartbeat. Once the lamb is strong enough, the shepherd will place it back in the field with the rest of the flock. But that sheep never forgets how the shepherd cared for him when his mother rejected him.
When the shepherd calls for the flock, guess who runs to him first? That is right, the bummer sheep. He knows his voice intimately. It is not that the bummer lamb is loved more, it just knows intimately the one who loves it. It's not that it is loved more, it just believes it because it has experienced that love one on one.
So many of us are bummer lambs, rejected and broken. But He is the good Shepherd. He cares for our every need and holds us close to His heart so we can hear His heart beat. We may be broken but we are deeply loved by the Shepherd."

[Author Sheila Walsh book "Loved back to life"]

5 Ways God Wants to Protect You and Direct You [devotional by Rick Warren]
  1. If you bring your hurts to him, Jesus is compassionate.
Jesus has compassion on us, because he knows that we are helpless without him (Matthew 9:36). He doesn’t put you down; he lifts you up. He doesn’t hassle you; he heals you.
“The Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many” (Matthew 20:28 ESV).
  1. If you follow him, Jesus leads you in the right direction.
The Shepherd goes before. He leads from the front and calls you forward. Jesus is not going to push you through life. He’s going to say, “Watch how I do it. Look where I go.”
“When he has led out all of his sheep, he walks in front of them, and they follow, because they know his voice” (John 10:4 CEV).
  1. If you get confused or wander away, Jesus will find you and bring you back.
When God brings you back from wandering away from him, he will not punish you, but he may discipline you. If a shepherd has a sheep that is prone to wander, he will often wrap that sheep’s leg so it can’t move. In the same way, sometimes God gives us a limp to keep us from wandering.
“If a man has a hundred sheep but one of the sheep gets lost, he will leave the other ninety-nine on the hill and go to look for the lost sheep” (Matthew 18:12 NCV).
  1. If you fail or fall, Jesus rescues you and sets you on the road to recovery.
Like all sheep, we not only wander, but we also stumble. When we trust that God is going to restore us and rescue us when we fail, we’ll faithfully run to him every time we mess up.
“If any of you has a sheep and it falls into a pit on the Sabbath, will you not rescue it and lift it out? How much more valuable is a man than a sheep!” (Matthew 12:11-12 NIV).
  1. If you trust him to save you, Jesus will keep his promise to do just that.
It’s not your job to save yourself. Your job is simply to put your hand in God’s and say, “God, I’m all yours—the good, the bad, the ugly.” God loves you too much to ever let you go.
“My Father gave my sheep to me. He is greater than all, and no person can steal my sheep out of my Father’s hand” (John 10:29 NCV).
The goodness of God means he’s going to guide you, guard you, protect you, direct you, and save you. No one else can offer you those five benefits. They only come from Jesus, our Good Shepherd

Sunday, April 28, 2019

Overcoming The Scars

        Last week's blog talked about where our help comes from, which is Jesus Christ.  I want to continue this week with how we must not let the world and it's sin, harshness, hurts, cold heartedness, and manipulative ways change us from the path God intends.  1 John 4:4 reminds us as believers, whose we are and where to put our faith in Him and not false gods or witnesses..."You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world."  Also in 1 John 5:3-5 "In fact, this is love for God: to keep his commands. And his commands are not burdensome, for everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith.  Who is it that overcomes the world? Only the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God."
        TobyMac has a new song with lyrics that describes the point of this blog well.  "It doesn't matter who you are, this world's gonna leave some battle scars."   Can we not all relate to the following?  "When life cuts so deep, try and remember..You, you're are not alone, We've all been there.  Scars come with livin',  You, you're not alone.  We've all been there, oh, so lift your head, lift your head, to where your help comes from, you're not alone."
       Yes, it's true, we all have both physical and emotional scars from living in this world.  God knew this and that's why He gave us assurance by saying in John 16:32-33, " “A time is coming and in fact has come when you will be scattered, each to your own home. You will leave me all alone. Yet I am not alone, for my Father is with me.I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

3 Things We Can Live With As Christians, God's Chosen People
[J.D. Greear]

1] Assurance-- Salvation begins in God, it is accomplished by God and what God starts He will finish.  He chose us before there was anything good in us.  He is more committed to our salvation than we are.  John 6:37-39  " All those the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never drive away. For I have come down from heaven not to do my will but to do the will of him who sent me. And this is the will of him who sent me, that I shall lose none of all those he has given me,but raise them up at the last day."

2] Hope-- We can bravely face all of our trials, because God works all things for good for those who believe in Him.  We don't see the big picture, but God does and controls it.  God will one day turn our messy threads of life into a beautiful masterpiece for His glory.  Romans 8:18  " I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us."

3]Boldness in Evangelism--  God has revealed to us that it is our job to share Christ with others, and not discriminate with who we think is 'elected.'  Obedience to share the gospel with others is all that is required.

Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord God, my God, is with you. He will not fail you or forsake you.

1 Chronicles 28:20