Today’s Scripture: Have not I commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: For the Lord thy God is with thee withersoever thou goest. Joshua 1:9

There were two butterflies in a tree that had recently emerged from their chrysalises. For the first time, they had the opportunity to soar through the air with the sun on their wings. The first butterfly was ready, but the second trembled with fear. “What if our wings don’t work? What if a bird eats us? What if….” The first butterfly interrupted the ‘what-ifs’, “There is no point in having wings if you are not going to use them. You may as well be stuck in that awkward looking cocoon for the rest of your life. As for me, I am not going to sit around here doing nothing. Bad things can happen to you even while you are sitting on this little branch. We were made to fly, so I am going to spread my wings and try.”

How many times in the Bible does it say to fear not? How many times does it say to have courage? Joshua, Gideon, Elijah, Rahab, Mary – so many of the people we look up to in God’s Word struggled with fear just like we do. Whether you are afraid to speak in front of crowded rooms, afraid to sing, or nervous to talk to new people, whatever you fear, use your fear as an opportunity to see God’s power at work in your life. It is better to know that you need God’s help than it is to approach something with the mindset that you already have it all together.

But you do not need to be afraid. In that moment when you are faced with doing the thing you fear, picture yourself before the Lord, looking at His face. After all, He is truly there with you through the entire situation. Pray about the matter, and be courageous. You only have one life to live. At the end of your days, do you want to look back at a life filled with missed opportunities? Fear will do nothing but hold you back unless you know Who to hand it to. We are lacking faith when we fear.

What are you afraid of today? Are you scared that you will be left to live your life alone? Are you fearful of failure or embarrassment? Dear friend, no matter where you are, the Lord is always with you. Honestly, He loves you more than any human being ever could, so do not use anything as an excuse not to serve Him with everything you’ve got. As long as you are doing what the Lord has asked of you, and you are doing it all for Him, you have His blessing-so live like it! God has not given us a spirit of fear but of power. No matter what you are facing today, be it big or small, better fly butterfly. Spread your wings and try.

Devotional by Dr. James A. Scudder