Heavy emotions can feel like an undercurrent tugging us down into discouragement and depression, can’t they? We can keep trying to desperately cling to our only HOPE. But sometimes… Lord, I can’t hang on anymore…
I sometimes feel so overwhelmed with sadness over all the sorrow and suffering in the world, and this Covid pandemic has my emotions all over the map. But I often trap them inside. I feel compelled to show others I am strong enough to handle them on my own. Including God… I allow burdens, that of others and of myself, to weigh me down too much instead of truly surrendering them over to God who alone has the power to rescue, redeem, and restore.
I even fight against the way God chooses to redeem and revive. I forget not a tear is wasted. I forget that our hearts are transformed the most through suffering. I forget God has the power to paint beauty out of ashes.
Before this Covid crisis hit us, I downloaded a free devotional book about Finding God’s Presence in Everyday Living. When Jeanne Takenaka wrote it, she had no idea how fitting it would be for such a time as this.
One morning my heart nudged me to get back to reading it. The first words I read expressed my feelings:
“Have you ever felt like life was overwhelming you? Like thing after thing was piling on you, stealing your strength and leaving you gasping?” (Jeanne Takenaka)
Oh yes, that is how I feel, Lord! Please help us!
Then towards the end of the devotion:
“When the ground beneath us shifts, God’s mercy upholds us. He is always with us, in every season.We can find reassurance knowing our Father’s got us. He’s holding our hands and sharing His consolations with us when we need them most.” (Jeanne Takenaka)
Yes, Lord, I want to believe
Your mercy will hold us up!
I believe, please help my unbelief!
The ground beneath us has shifted drastically throughout this entire world. We may feel like we’re free falling into a deep, dark hole. Simple everyday things we thought we had control of have been taken out of our hands.
God’s got us, and His mercy will uphold us, no matter what we’re going through. So why am I still afraid?
You know how a well-adjusted child jumps into the arms of a loving father? Trusting with all his heart that Daddy will catch him?
When our trust has been so broken in life, even when we have come far on the journey of healing, fear can suddenly pop up. Lack of control over our lives may trigger fear of trusting others, even our Heavenly Father. Even when He invites us, “Come, My child. Jump into My arms. I’ll catch you and I’ll hold you closely in My loving arms. I won’t harm you. I’ll fight for you. So trust Me, My child! I’ve got this! Trust My way and My timing. Relax, let go of your grip on control, and surrender your heart and life to Me. Let yourself fall into My arms!”
Desperately, we keep holding onto some form of control. Is He really safe? Will He truly catch us? Will He hold us and get us through this?
God has promised He will!
“The eternal God is your refuge and dwelling place,
And underneath are the everlasting arms;
He drove out the enemy from before you,
And said, ‘Destroy!’”
And you know what? God doesn’t condemn us when we slip and find ourselves not trusting Him again. He understands that struggling journey far better than any person in the world does. He accepts us just as we are in all our humanness. He understands how our emotions can take us all over the map. But He never gives up on us, even when we give up on Him. He holds His arms open wide and keeps coaxing us to let go and fall into His arms of mercy and unfailing love that He has promised will support us!
“Unless the Lord had given me help,
I would soon have dwelt in the silence of death.
When I said, “My foot is slipping,”
Your unfailing love, Lord, supported me.”
Everybody needs you strong
But life hits you out of nowhere
And barely leaves you holding on
Chained by your control
There’s freedom in surrender
Lay it down and let it go
You’re not alone, stop holding on and just be held
Your world’s not falling apart, it’s falling into place
I’m on the throne, stop holding on and just be held
Just be held, just be held…”