Isaiah 43:2 (NRSV) When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you.
Last night I was cutting up a few slices of ham to include with scalloped potatoes for dinner. I cut too much and, well, because my dogs were underfoot, I took a piece and dropped it on the floor. My dachshund immediately scooped up the piece I had and began to eat. My black lab (puppy) just watched. I wondered, at that moment, if she expected my dachshund to share or if she was secretly plotting to steal the ham away some how. I’m not sure…but if she would have only looked up at me, she would have noticed that I had a bigger bite-size piece for her. But she never looked up….she just focused on the other dog’s treat.
As I watched this little exchange take place, I heard God’s still, small voice say “If you would only look at me instead of your circumstances you wouldn’t drive yourself so crazy.”
Ok, so, don’t you love it when God gives you a real-time example? My puppy’s focus wasn’t on me at all…it was on what she couldn’t control. God was using this situation to show me what I had been doing over the past few weeks. I had allowed the circumstances in my life to overwhelm me. When things get like that…it’s up to me to ask myself a little question:
“Have I looked to Christ at all to get me through the storm of my current circumstances?”
My answer, “NOPE…not at all.” The truth was really easy to see once I took the focus off of what was going on. My attention was clearly set on my circumstance. Because of this, I got distracted and so spun up that my fear and anxiety took over and rendered me helpless and unable to breathe. Believe me, this is one character flaw I am trying to fix…but…change is hard.
From the moment I saw how I had been relying on myself to “help me get through” my circumstances, I cried out to God.
“Father forgive me! Help me to keep my focus squarely on you. Help me to look to you for answers and not rely on what I can only see with my eyes. I know you are beside me every step of the way – forgive me for failing to see that.”
I must remember, there is ABSOLUTELY NOTHING in this world that can separate me from the love of Jesus Christ (Romans 8:28)
Three things I know for certain…
1 – God loves me with an everlasting love (His love is without condition) Jerimiah 31:3
2 – He will never leave me nor forsake me (Deut. 31:8) – He is with me wherever I go (Ex. 33:14)
3 – He is not shocked or surprised by anything that happens because He is God and sees everything (Prov. 5:21, Job 34:21)