Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Feeling Defenseless?

Sometimes, I feel pretty defenseless. Life has taught me that I can walk into a situation that I think will be wonderful and instead end up disappointed. Did I miss warning signs that I was making a wrong turn? Usually. But at the time, I didn't have the perspective I needed to know how uneasy those signs should've made me. I was doing my best and still ended up in a hard place.

On the other hand, I've had some situations that made me leery at first but that ended well. So, I'm left with this desire to forge ahead for the reward of the good outcomes while my worrying mind plagues me with reminders of worst case scenarios.

Ever been there?

In the middle of one of those worry sessions, I grabbed my Bible, flipped it open, and was immediately drawn to the header over Isaiah 40: Comfort for God's People. Perfect! The reading reminded me that God is big, and we are small. None of our problems are too big or challenging for him, and nothing happens that he doesn't control--including situations that turn out badly from my human perspective.

But you know how worry goes, don't you? I still felt vulnerable. I still didn't know what decision to make.

And then I read all the way to Isaiah 41, where I found this gem: Fear not, you worm Jacob, you men of Israel! I am the one who helps you, declares the Lord; your Redeemer is the Holy One of Israel. Behold, I make of you a threshing sledge, new, sharp, and having teeth. (vs 14-15a, ESV)

When I feel like a defenseless, toothless, armless, squishy worm, I don't have to be afraid. God is helping me and making me new and sharp. And he's giving me teeth! Will that mean a trouble-free life? Of course not. If it did, we wouldn't need the teeth.

I almost used a lion photo at the top of this post because of the lion's huge teeth. But the thing about lions is that they move on their own. This verse in Isaiah calls us a threshing sledge, a tool. We may have teeth, but they are useless without the hand of our Master moving us and using us. So, the lion photo didn't quite fit. There isn't a threshing sledge in the photo I found for this post, but if you want to take a look, here's a Google image search on threshing sledges. That's a lot of teeth!

In a world full of uncertainty, it's comforting to remember that God is mighty and good. And he doesn't leave his people defenseless.

What verses encourage you when you're worried?

Your Sister

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