Don’t Be Afraid—the Lord Is Your Shield
If you’re feeling discouraged or overwhelmed today, the Lord wants to give you a fresh and life-giving hazon vision to encourage you.
Did you know that’s exactly what He did for Abraham when Abraham was discouraged and rehearsing negative images in his heart? In Genesis 15:1, the Bible tells us, “The word of the Lord came to Abram in a vision, saying, ‘Do not be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your exceedingly great reward.’”
Abraham must have seen a magen, a shield, as he heard the Lord speak those powerful words to him. He had just defeated four warrior kings and their armies and could have been fearful of reprisals from them (Gen. 14:17 NLT). But see how the Lord reassured Abraham, saying, “I am your shield.” With that vision dominating Abraham’s thoughts and heart, how could he not face his enemies, face his adversities, face life with courage and positivity?
What about you, my friend—are you battling some fear in your life? Has the loss of your job or a loved one caused anxiety, panic attacks, and sleepless nights? Or do you just feel all alone and uncared for in these tumultuous times? I pray that even as you read this, you will see the Lord as your mighty magen and hear Him speak these words right into your heart: “I AM your shield. Do not be afraid, I am your protector and provider!”
Your Provision Is in the Vision
Friend, the Lord’s heart is always to encourage you. And have you noticed that whenever God shows you in His Word that you are blessed or how blessed you are, He often paints a picture? For example, in Psalm 1:3, it says this of the blessed man:
He shall be like a tree
Planted by the rivers of water,
That brings forth its fruit in its season,
Whose leaf also shall not wither;
And whatever he does shall prosper.
What a beautiful picture of health, of life, and of flourishing! I remember how I wanted this vision or picture to be so rooted in my heart that when I was in Israel, I took a photograph of myself by the rivers at Tel Dan. What I was doing was seeing myself as that blessed man and building faith images in my heart.
Why is this important?
Our Lord Jesus said, “A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart brings forth evil. For out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks” (Luke 6:45). In practicing faith, many believers focus on saying the right thing. But what precedes speaking is what the heart sees. It’s what you’re seeing in your heart that gives power to what you say.
Say you are believing the Lord for a good job. You’re making all the right confessions. But something tells you it’s not working. Why? Because in your heart you still see yourself jobless. You still see rejected applications or unsuccessful interviews or a lack of opportunity. The right vision is the missing element in your faith process!
My friend, the Lord always prioritizes seeing. In Genesis 13:14–15, the Lord said to Abraham, “Lift your eyes now and look from the place where you are—northward, southward, eastward, and westward; for all the land which you see I give to you and your descendants forever.” As long as Abraham could see it, it belonged to him and his descendants.
Your provision is in the vision.
That is why the Bible tells you to “guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life” (Prov. 4:23 NLT). Your heart is affected by what it sees. So the enemy wants to trouble and pollute your heart with negative images, but the Lord wants to flood it with light and restore to you the right visions to prosper every area of your life.
This is why I encourage you to take time to hear from the Holy Spirit what to allow into your heart daily through your ear and eye gates. Don’t simply allow your heart and mind to feed on carnal and dark pictures that come through what you read, watch, or hear. Remember, what your heart is impacted by is what will be reproduced in your life.
What Are You Seeing?
You might be thinking, “That’s all very good, Pastor Prince, but I’ve been discouraged for so long, honestly, all I can see is how bad my situation is. I can’t see how it’s ever going to change.”
My friend, our Lord Jesus understands and He cares. More than that, He wants to take you out of your pit of depression and into your promised land of blessing. We just read how the Lord came to Abraham in a vision to encourage him. But did you know how Abraham responded?
He didn’t respond with praise or worship. He responded by saying, “Lord God, what will You give me, seeing I go childless, and the heir of my house is Eliezer of Damascus?” (Gen. 15:1–2). Abraham was deeply discouraged—seeing himself childless, seeing how his servant, Eliezer, would be his sole heir. The Lord had told Abraham he would bless him and his descendants, but up to now, he and Sarah, his wife, still weren’t able to have even one child. And in his response, Abraham revealed how this gaping lack constantly plagued and occupied his thoughts.
If you can identify with this, I want you to see the Lord’s answer.
He did something to change Abraham’s vision. The Lord brought him outside of his tent and showed Abraham the innumerable stars in the night sky and told him to number them if he could, and said, “So shall your descendants be” (Gen. 15:5).
I believe that as Abraham looked at the stars, they became like countless faces of children crying out, “Father Abraham! Father Abraham! Father Abraham!” until his heart was so filled with that vision. The Lord changed what Abraham was seeing and in a matter of time from his own loins, Isaac came into existence.
Maybe you’ve been discouraged by a long-term illness, a crippling debt, a painful relationship, or a string of setbacks and losses. Can I encourage you to come freely to the Lord and ask of Him as Abraham did? He will not condemn you for asking. Instead, He is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that you ask (Eph. 3:20). If you think about it, the Lord is still giving Abraham descendants through Isaac (Rom. 9:7) and through Christ (Gal. 3:29).
Beloved, our Lord is the God who oversupplies what you ask for. But first, He wants you to allow Him to change the negative images you are seeing and give you a fresh vision straight from heaven that will cause you to walk in His healing, protection, and practical supply.