‘It is I, do not be afraid’ (John 6:20)
The fears of a Christian are a dishonour to their Lord, a denial of their creed, and a fruitful source of distress to their own soul. All things are of God; He works all things after the counsel of His own will, and in every event the Lord Jesus says to us, “IT IS I, DO NOT BE AFRAID”.
If friends turn to enemies and distress us, if death enters our home and bereaves us, if sickness impacts us and fills us with pain, Jesus says, “It is I, do not be afraid”. If losses, crosses, and painful trials come upon us and discourage, distress and perplex us, Jesus says, “It is I, do not be afraid”.
If death approaches and calls upon us to leave the body, and close our eyes upon our dearly loved relatives, friends and connections, Jesus says, “It is I, do not be afraid”. Should we hear the pillars of heaven crack, and feel the strong foundations of earth give way; should the heavens be rolled up like a scroll, and the great white throne appear; still amid the wreck of matter and the crush of worlds, Jesus cries, “Do not be afraid, it is I”. Happy Christian! Your fears are groundless and your brightest hopes well founded.
Oh, that I might so believe,
Steadfastly to Jesus cleave;
Only on his love rely,
Smile at the destroyer nigh;
Free from care and servile fear,
Feel the Saviour always near.
THE DAILY REMEMBRANCER by James Smith (1802-1862)
‘Still in the furnace, but the flames have not consumed me. My path is rough, my foes are many, and my passions are strong. I often wonder why I am so tried, but sometimes I look at my usefulness, and my proneness to be proud; at my sins, and the holiness of my Saviour’s nature; at the low state of things in the churches, and the power that Satan possesses; and then I am not so much surprised’.