What do I say?
What’s the point?
There are so many, many, many others who write more lyrically, more lovely, more life-giving words than me.
Am I just adding to the clamorous din of this time and space – where many are vying for attention?
I woke up in a funk this morning. Insecurity, fear, and sadness had been my bedfellows.
I rose from bed feeling unsettled and sorrow-filled after a not-so-very-nice dream. Have you ever had a dream that left you unsettled? The distressing tremors continued to rattle and shake my thoughts. The first hour of my morning didn’t go particularly well. Our son Jake often describes such a discombobulating time as “being a little off.”
I was off.
I definitely wasn’t ‘on.’
And because of something I forgot to do the day before, that had needed to be done, I was forced to switch up my morning routine and complete that task. Already being ‘off,’ already feeling not-so-happy, already feeling quite helpless with the COVID-19 crisis, and already wondering when-oh-when-will-we-ever-be-able-to-go-home, I also felt the crushing weight of inadequacy and insecurity.
Ugh. Ugh. Ugh.
This was not how I wanted to begin my day.
Overall, our family has been doing well with our shelter-in-place situation. Gratefully, we have a number of routines we follow throughout the day and these have provided a sense of peace and security in our home-for-now space.
John and I also realize that it is important that we, as the parental unit, be demonstrating a unified front of love, care, support, and security for our kids through this uncertain, unsettling time. Yet, when my uneasiness bled through my heart and into my words, instead of me being the steady and sure one, it was the care, concern and encouragement of my family that helped get me back on track.
A heavy heart can make even a positive, hope-filled and upbeat person like me stooped low and bent over with melancholy and woe. King Solomon understood this. Yet, he also understood that there was a remedy, too.
Anxiety weighs down the heart,
but a kind word cheers it up.
New International Version, Proverbs 12:25
A malicious word, a terrible-dream-that-seems-so-real, a vicious threat, a sudden loss, a heart-piercing betrayal, an embarrassing failure, and even more-so, a world-wide pandemic that currently has so end sends disturbing tremors and unsettling aftershocks through our hearts. These are our anxious cares, our dreadful concerns, and our weighted worries. We are seized and paralyzed by fear and dread and could easily buckle under the strain.
But we will not.
Instead, we will counter the distress and the dread with a hope reviving word.
Where do we find this word of encouragement?
Where do we find this inspiration?
Where do we find this strength?
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
New International Version, Matthew 11:28-30
We were never meant to be yoked to fear and distress. Yet, we often harness ourselves to the dread of adversity and the grief and sorrow it shackles us with, don’t we?
Case in point – the COVID-19 virus has shaken the entire world – no one is untouched by its invisible, but powerful, malevolent reach. There is fear. There is worry. There is sorrow and grief. There is death. We don’t really know when the unwelcome presence of this virus in our lives will end. Next month? Next week? Tomorrow? If only!!!!
The virus invaded my dreams last night and left me sad and shaken. And yet, Jesus promises to release me from the burden of my fear and give me peace. He wants to lift every sadness, every hardship, and every fear and in turn, give me life in Him.
This is His encouraging word of hope, cheer, and grace.
Jesus Christ is with us.
Jesus Christ is for us.
Jesus Christ and his power are at work within us!
For God did not give us a spirit of fear, but of power, love and self-discipline!
New International Version, 2 Timothy 1:7
This is my word of hope to you today!
In Christ, you can rest in the assurance that He will care for your every need, your every thought, your every care and concern.
He will make your bad dreams vanish and fill your mind with his truth and his love.
My day didn’t start so well. However, that doesn’t mean that I can’t finish my day – settled and strong.
I may not be the best writer, but I will always be an encourager. This is the cheering word I was given today.
Let’s live another day and live it strong because of the peace and joy we have in Christ.
This is the day the Lord has made;
We will rejoice and be glad in it.
New International Version, Psalm 118:24