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“Therefore, we may boldly say, ‘The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid.  What can man do to me?’” Hebrews 13:6 CSB

I can honestly say, I struggle with a fear of people.  It comes from being hurt. It is one of the hardest fears I have to overcome.  I’ve had people who I thought were my friends betray me. When I was single and dating, I was lied too, cheated on, used and abused.  It wasn’t fun. When you have placed your trust in someone and they abuse it, it leaves a mark that is deep. It can’t be seen from the outside, but it is definitely felt on the inside.  What’s even sadder, I’m sure I have hurt people. I’ve disappointed them by not living up to their expectations of me. That is the humanity in all of us, the imperfection we all carry.

But the Lord is my helper, He helps me overcome my fear.  I place my trust in Him, not people. Through Him, I can be a conqueror.  And so can you. When we soak up positive energy, one of the benefits is boldness.  We’ll have the courage to do things we otherwise wouldn’t do. Boldness, defined by Webster’s 1828 dictionary is defined as freedom from bashfulness, excess freedom.

Whistler’s Mother is a famous portrait you’ve probably seen.  It was painted in 1871 by James Whistler, his mother the model.  She is sitting in her long black dress, looking straight ahead. It’s left to the viewer to decide what this mother is thinking about.  According to an article in the New Yorker, it is the most important American work that resides outside of the U.S. in France. It’s painter, James Whistler was not bashful about his talent.  He knew he was good. At one point he lost a shipment of blank canvases. When he was asked if they were valuable, his response was, “Not yet, not yet.”

We can be like James, we can have confidence in our worth with Jesus.  We can overcome any fear we have, even fear of people. And we can do it boldly.  Our lives are the blank canvases, as God begins to work in us, as we look to Him for help our boldness will increase. As you live out your life the painting will begin to merge into a beautiful portrait.  Each new day is a blank canvas God has given you. You can paint it however you want too, being confident of its value. You too can say, “Not yet, not yet

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