Almost every night for the first three years our children were home, one of them would wake up screaming in terror. It was equal parts pitiful and frustrating. Any mom knows that desperate, bone-weary feeling of sleeplessness. It makes you go to all lengths to get the rest you need. In our case, nothing kept the children’s’ fears at bay quite like lying down next to them and assuring them that they were safe.
Night after night of being reassured and comforted (and sometimes fussed at) finally brought enough peace to their little hearts to sleep more consistently. Meanwhile, God used those long nights to teach us more about Himself and the gift of His Presence. If nothing else came from the exhaustion, He has continually taught us that the presence of a parent — especially a Heavenly Father — satisfies even the deepest longings.
Much like my children, if I can identify what I am feeling and dwell on the attribute of God’s character that meets me in that tender place, He meets me there and stills my soul because of who He is.
When I’m feeling anxious and uneasy, His love replaces fear with peace.
When I’m tempted to run to something other than what He provides for me in Christ, His goodness brings trust to my places of doubt.
When I am trying to get things right and run the show in my own strength, His sovereign grace puts an end to my striving.
When I feel like I’ve screwed things up, His perfection is my righteousness.
As I think with anticipation on a new year and all that potentially lays ahead, my heart brims with excitement and hope mingled with apprehension. Just like my precious children, adjusting to life in a safe family, nothing calms my fears like the presence of my Father. And THIS Father laid down His life so that I could forever be safe in His family. The presence of One who is greater floods my anxious heart with peace.
So, can I encourage you as I reassure myself? As we fold back the pages of our fresh 2016 planners and the unallocated days fill our hearts with hopeful excitement. Let’s look at those little boxes on our calendars, representative of twenty-four hours, as gift boxes waiting to be filled with His powerful Presence. Because, He knows the future He has planned for us and whether it’s filled with life, death, love, laughter, heartache, grief, growth, rest, weariness, misunderstanding, change, bliss, boredom, disappointment, progress, or all of the above; the awareness of His Presence and a belief in who He is, will satisfy all that we could ever need.
How have you seen God meet your deepest needs with Himself? I’d love to hear more of what you’re learning as you grow in Him this year. You can find me over on Instagram or at my blog www.joelandkitty.com.
Kitty Hurdle wears several hats, just like you. She’s wife to the love of her life, mom to two precious little ones, writer and campus minister in Oxford, Mississippi.