Read Isaiah 43:1-3
As I sit for a moment before work, watching Mattie eat his breakfast, I pray that he grows to know the Lord but, not just that, that he grows to know and live in the confidence that Christ is always with him. Since I was a young girl, I always knew and believed who Jesus was, but it wasn’t until I surrendered my life that the confidence of God’s presence always being with me was the truth for my life.
Before surrendering, I doubted often that He was with me, I feared often that He would leave me and I cried often that I had done too much or seen too much to be considered holy. I pray and plead that Mattie and our soon-to-be-born, Emma, never go through what I did when it comes to knowing that Jesus is close.
As I watch Mattie, I think of the song “It is well” by Bethel. Some of the lyrics go “far be it from me to not believe even when my eyes can’t see and this mountain that’s in front of me will be thrown into the midst of the sea. Through it all, through it all my eyes are on You. Through it all, it is well”.
I sing this, or think of this, because, when it comes to things that he and Emma may one day face, I want them to know the truth that, no matter the mountain or waves that they face, they will be okay because their eyes will be fixed on Jesus.
This is hard to do, it takes practice and constant renewing of your mind and heart. For someone who struggles with anxiety, it is especially hard to keep eyes fixed on Jesus because it means surrendering all of yourself, all of your control in order for Him to move within your life.
The holiness in that brokenness is that, as my life began to change, my faith began to grow as did my knowledge of God’s character. I have grown to know that He will never leave me or forsake me. I’ve grown to live in the confidence that His presence is accessible because He is always near. I’ve grown to know that nothing will separate His love and care for me because He does love and care for me and has proven it time and time again. Sometimes I just have to open my mind, heart and eyes to see just how much He has come through. His faithfulness has outweighed the outcome of my anxiety and I’m able to rest on His word, His truth and His love.
There have been people in my life that have asked me, “How do you just know that God is there?” My answer often points back to the promises of His word but also just the fact that the gift of faith has grown as I have grown in Him.
The gift of faith is something that does not come easy for me either. I am a doubter -a big-time worrier – and I often question the motives of most everyone. It took a long time for me to realize and practice that faith and logic do not go hand and hand. Once I was able to realize and stand firm in the truth that, no matter what is happening around me the Lord is with me, my anxiety dissipates.
So, if you too, struggle with anxiety, if you struggle with the emotions that render from the unknown, I ask you to reread Isaiah 43:1-3. Read it over and over again until your mind clicks. Until you are able to read those words and stand firm, acting on that truth.
I pray and plead that, through it all, your eyes are fixed on Jesus.