Though you are a worm
(John MacDuff, "The Thoughts of God")
"Do not be afraid, worm Jacob; I will help you! says the LORD, your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel." Isaiah 41:14
"Worm Jacob!" What weakness, insignificance, unworthiness! Yet it is this helpless, groveling "worm," which occupies the thoughts of God — receives His sympathy, and has the assurance of His almighty aid!
Believer, beaten down it may be, with a great fight of affliction, or trembling under a sense of your unworthiness and guilt — mourning . . .
the coldness of your faith,
the lukewarmness of your love,
the frequency of your backslidings,
the fitfulness of your best purposes,
the feebleness of your best services —
your God draws near to you — He remembers that though you are a worm — still you are "worm Jacob," — His own beloved, covenant one; and He tells you that the thoughts which He thinks towards you, are "thoughts of peace, and not of evil."
Mark His message of comfort, "Do not be afraid!" Mark His promise, "I will help you!" The guarantee which He gives for the fulfillment of that promise, is His own great name; "says the Lord, your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel."
"I Myself will help you!" Yes, poor, weak, trembling one, "Jehovah", "your Redeemer", "the Holy One of Israel" — in other words, Omnipotence, Love, and Righteousness, are all embarked on your side, and pledged for your salvation!
He loves to draw near to His people in the extremity of their weakness. "He will not break the bruised reed; He will not quench the smoking flax." Man would do so. Man would often crush the writhing worm under his feet — bid the trembling penitent away; but He whose thoughts are not as our thoughts, says, "Neither do I condemn you!"
Be it mine to go in the strength of the Lord God. "I will help you!" is enough for all the emergencies of the present; and all the contingencies of an untried, and, it may be, a dark future. "But happy are those who have the God of Israel as their helper, whose hope is in the Lord their God."