My wife became seriously ill during her pregnancy with our second child. As the doctors struggled to find the problem, she continued to grow weaker—dangerously so.

Watching her suffer was a helpless and horrible feeling for me, and there were days when it felt as if God were not hearing our prayers. One Sunday, while I was looking for comfort from Scripture, my eyes landed on the first verse in Isaiah 43.

“Fear not,” it begins, and ends with “you are Mine.” Instantly, the Holy Spirit made the words personal. The intimate way God addresses Israel reminded me of His always-present attention to us too: “When you pass through the waters . . . through the rivers . . . through the fire” (v.2). Each phrase rose up in crescendo, from the pages to my heart.

Our comfort in that hour came not from promises of healing or miracles, but from knowing we were never alone. We had many other frightening times, including just after Ethan’s birth, when it looked as if both he and Cheryl would be lost. But God had used His words to comfort us and prepare us for those harder moments!

Let these words be a reminder to you that you are never alone.