Promises of God: Sleep

In peace I will lie down and sleep,
for you alone, O Lord, will keep me safe. Psalm 4:8, NLT

I wrote my very first blog post in August of 2013. The last paragraph ending with this desire:

My transparency may not only be God’s way of helping me be honest with myself and others, but His way of letting someone else know that they are not alone. It could be His way of letting a weary, frazzled mother who thinks everyone else has it all together, be reminded: “See, my child, she is just like you.”

Our son, Hunter, had been diagnosed at 18 months old with high functioning autism. Prior to this diagnosis he was struggling to walk, struggling to talk, and struggling to function with his day to day emotions. To the outsider he looked “normal.” He rarely broke a rule. Threw a tantrum (against the rules), or did anything considered “atypical.” He saved all of that for home. And he rarely slept. He had a very LONG bedtime routine. And night terrors often woke him.

I started this blog as a way to get my thoughts together. About how I felt alone as a mom. About how I felt like no one believed me when I said he was autistic. Because they expected a “look.” Or because he was “fine for me.” Or because no one just got it, really.

I spent the hours at 3am writing. Instead of laying in bed thinking about things I couldn’t fix.

Hunter has always been a creature of sleep routines. From the time he was brought home he had unique and very intricate sleep patterns and routines. He would not sleep alone. Due to being laid with Mommy shortly after birth, he was a chest napping, and therefore a chest sleeping baby for about the first 3 weeks of life. My husband and I took turns on our couch, just ensuring he slept until his next feeding. And he slept. Soundly. As long as he was nestled heartbeat to heartbeat.

When he moved to his crib. Yep. Not easy. We had to purchase a special bear just so he would stay there. So used to the sound of heartbeats he had to go to sleep with this rhythm.

Until we discovered, he also had to hold onto something. This is where his beloved stuffed “puppy” comes in. He has not for one night, NOT slept without “puppy.” Let’s NOT even speak that into existence at this point. I don’t care if he IS a teen. Let him have that “puppy.”That “puppy” deserves to be bronzed. Well, not like an idol. If you know a “puppy” of this sort…you know what I mean.

Until sleep routines began to consist of back rubs until he fell asleep. That moved to figuring out math problems that left Hunter in fits of anxiety prior to bed. And his back rubs, consisted of whispered prayers that God would just fix this.

Until health scares turned to nights in the big bed to make sure everyone was ok. And more prayers. That He would just take these anxious thoughts away. Give Him peace. Some relief. Comfort. Someone to comfort Him while he was at school.

He still struggles with some anxiety, but I would not dare challenge that boy to a math contest. You are even more doomed if you dare to battle him at history. And He is often now the one who comforts. It took a lot of prayer, and yes…therapy; even a pandemic and extended time at home with no health scares for this to occur. But God works in mysterious ways.

His sleep problems seem to have ceased for now, though he still wakes when thunder booms. Now, mommy in her middle age struggles once again with the 3am wake-up call. This time it’s not because of that still small child. It’s likely my own anxious thoughts. Older age. God. Sometimes I answer, and I’ll still get up and write like I did when I started this journey way back when. But usually, I utter a simple prayer:

Lord, if you want me to get up; if there is something I need to talk out with you at this very moment you will let me know and I’ll get up. But, if this can wait until we have our time in the morning, please gently nudge me back to sleep.

And He tells me. Usually within 5 min I know. Sometimes I remember right away that I forgot to set my 5am alarm. My reminder I need to spend my morning quiet time with him, and I can get right back to sleep. Other times, I find myself still tossing and turning, and grabbing my 3am journal and heading down stairs.

Look, it may seem silly. But for 13 years we have been the keepers of “slumber.” I know He provides rest after a long day, and He promises that “You can go to bed without fear; you will lie down and sleep soundly.” (Proverbs 3:24). And He has proven this to be the case so many times in these years.

Have there been nights when sleep has not come? Of course. Some of those nights were filled with trials, and some of those nights were filled with tossing and turning of my own making because I simply didn’t call on God.

Know on those sleepless nights filled with trials, He is there watching your back, too; keeping you safe and gently guiding you to peaceful slumber. You are not alone.

Even at 3am.

Promises of God: Rest

He lets me rest in green meadows;
he leads me beside peaceful streams.
He renews my strength.
He guides me along right paths,
bringing honor to his name. Psalm 23:2-3

Anyone else need a long winter’s nap? I don’t mean the kind you need after losing an hour. I mean a few days of nothing but napping?

I can’t be the only one. We are a people who are busy, busy, busy. We move from place to place. Here and there. The next big thing without pause, and as a result we are exhausted-physically, mentally, emotionally, and even spiritually.

We need some rest.

Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28

In today’s verses, we read of the importance of rest. How it is provided by God. We also often take these verses quite literally. We often think they give us permission to just take a nap. And they do, rest for the soul requires physical rest. Even Jesus napped. But it requires more than just laying in our beds. It requires we rest in Him.

See, Jesus was clear in Matthew 11:28 about those burdens. He instructed us to lay them down. We, however, often carry them around like a badge of honor. Until we become weary with the load. The burdens were never intended for us to carry, so what do we do?

Our sins. The expectations of this world. The acts of others. Our search for purpose. We surrender that to Him, and we let Him carry it. We get rest from carrying our load. A load too heavy for us to manage alone.

We do this, and then we remain still. Still in the presence of God. Waiting for His timing, and not rushing to make things happen in our time. We surrender, and He gives us peace. And as the Psalmist says, He will lead us to the “green meadows and peaceful streams” intended to restore us.

He will give strength for the journey if we just let Him lead, and rest a while.

Yes. I need a nap today. Hours of them to be exact. I am burdened from toiling. Traveling. And the busy, busy, busy. But today as I wearily embark on another day I will thank Him for it. Surrender whatever occurs in it to Him, and know He will give me the strength to get me through to those “green meadows” He has waiting for me.

Today, I will rest in Him.

Promises of God: He Keeps Them

For the Lord your God is a merciful God; he will not abandon you or destroy you or forget the solemn covenant he made with your ancestors. Deuteronomy 4:31

He stood there, just having got off the school bus. Refusing to come inside the house. He did this frequently, so today was not any different than most. So I did what I usually do, sat on the porch and waited for this to be over.

Until he looked at me and said, “Aren’t we going to get donuts?”

He hadn’t forgotten. And I was really hoping he had forgotten.

“Can we go tomorrow?”

“No! You promised! You promised we would get donuts!” I could see it coming. Only because it used to come every afternoon (not over donuts, just because it was part of the after school sensory overload). A meltdown was brewing in the front yard. In full view of all the neighbors. And this one was all my fault. Because I was breaking a promise.

I did go get those donuts, and I vowed to not break a promise if it was in my power not to ever again. Not because I wanted to avoid a public meltdown. Simply because I wanted to avoid the disappointment that another person may feel. And because I now knew-kids remember promises. Frankly, I believe we all do. And we remember even more those that are broken.

And in those broken promises we build a foundation of mistrust, disappointment, and insecurity. In the world around us and the people in it.

It’s common. It’s a part of our carnal, sin nature. We say things and make promises to get the heat off us for a while. “We will do that tomorrow,” is often code for “Man I just don’t feel like it today, and I likely won’t want to tomorrow either. Maybe they will forget.” They don’t. They ask again. We put it off for another day, and they eventually do stop the asking, which is what we desired. But they also stop trusting. They stop seeking a relationship with us. They stop seeing us as reliable. Safe.

Until we start to wonder if promises were ever meant to be kept at all. Or mere lip service. Never to honored in the first place.

They were. They are meant to be kept. They will be honored.

And they are kept and honored by God. Every promise He makes He delivers. He has in the past and He will again.

He promised Abraham a son, and delivered. He promised to make him a father of many nations, and blessed him with offspring that made up the Twelve Tribes of Israel.

He promised David a descendent that would build a throne for God, which was in fact Solomon; but that would also sit with God. That his lineage would include one who saves. Through the lineage of David, we have Christ.

He promises that for those who believe in Christ, to provide the Holy Spirit, and He is surely alive and active. He promised and did adopt us as His children.

He also established an eternal kingdom for us, one He promises we will inherit one day. Do we believe His words are more than mere lip service? I know I do.

Promises may not mean much to people. They may be mere words spoken in haste, or to put someone off for the time being. But they are a covenant to God.

He WILL do what He has promised. He has before and He will again.

Promises of God: A New Path

The Lord says, “I will guide you along the best pathway for your life. I will advise you and watch over you.” Psalm 32:8

I love to read. I love to write. Written words are often easier for me than those spoken, and all through school I looked forward to English classes. Well, until it was time to study poetry. The process of breaking out words, stanzas, and trying to articulate what the poet was trying to convey? I just didn’t get it. Because a whole glob of feelings and experiences could be written on those short lines. The poet chose those for these reasons, and my literal interpretation could often be way off from its original intent.

Like this one:

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—I took the one less traveled by, And that has made all the difference. -Robert Frost

This poem is well-known. Perhaps it’s the depiction and pictures often laid out alongside this one that come to mind first. A fork in a clearing. Two paths. Oh, which one to take? The pictures and Frost’s words always made me visualize the difference between walking on a well-worn path. One filled with lots of people. Or choosing the one that is overgrown and rocky. No one usually chooses the rocky one. The well-worn path is easier to navigate. There are people along the way on that first one. It has been walked before, and there are no signs of danger. It’s just easier.

When reading these words presently, I think of two other paths. The one the world chooses, and the path of God.

We can often stand at a fork in the “road.” Stand in the midst of our spiritual path, and wonder which way to go. Do we choose the path that is easiest? The one that promises riches, success, and fame? The one that is easy to fall in line with and navigate because so many have walked it before? Or do we choose the one filled with rocks? It doesn’t always offer a quick way out, or a get it fast solution. It is filled with directions that can be seen by the world as rigid or intolerable.

It’s the one often less traveled by, and it does make all the difference. The best part is our guide is along for the journey, offering us directions to navigate the rocks, hills, and valleys along the way. If we are willing to choose this path, He gives us a guidebook to help us walk along it. And if we stumble over a few rocks, He provides us the way to get back up.

If you are walking along that easier path, still stumbling, surrounded by lots of people but still lost. No one to guide you. Maybe it is time to choose the one less traveled by. There are people along this one, too. Who can point you to the instructions God has laid out for our walk in the Bible. And God himself, He will take your hand and guide you along the way.

It will make all the difference.

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Promises of God: Design and Purpose

“I knew you before I formed you in your mother’s womb.
Before you were born I set you apart
and appointed you as my prophet to the nations.” Jeremiah 1:5, NLT

Today we are once again in the book of Jeremiah. Right at the very beginning when Jeremiah is called by God to be His prophet to Judah.

Jeremiah’s response? “I’m too young. No way I can do this!”

Excuses. Excuses. Excuses. When God calls us to something, too often we make excuses for why we may not be capable, and Jeremiah was no exception.

Though given an important task-to provide warning and move the Israelites towards repentance-and though chosen by God-Jeremiah struggled throughout much of his assignment. He was God’s voice, but no one listened. He urged people to act, but no one moved. He was poor, thrown into prison, rejected by his family and people, and did not see God’s prophesy fulfilled in His time.

He thought he was failing. God thought he was a victor. Because Jeremiah moved in his purpose and did what God called him to do.

Jeremiah believed in the promise provided to him-that God not only designed him for this, but that God would be with him, protect him, and give him the words to speak (v. 8-9).

We have a calling, too. God designed this calling for us long ago when He designed us. When the time is right to fulfill it, God will be with us, protect us, give us words to equip us.

When we do what God has purposed, we are never failing, only victorious.

Ain’t No Mountain

For the mountains may move and the hills disappear, but even then my faithful love for you will remain. My covenant of blessing will never be broken, says the Lord, who has mercy on you. Isaiah 54:10

I love music. It has been the permeating sound of my life for many years. Even as a kid. Riding in the backseat of my parents car, I remember listening to what I referred to back then as the “oldies.” Motown classics. Old school crooners like Frankie Valli, and girl gangs such as The Shangri-Las. Rides in my dad’s truck consisted of tape decks filled with The Pointer Sisters, and Huey Lewis and the News. I remember kitchen dance parties with Elvis and my mom. Music was my jam, and I loved all of it.

There is one song that gets me going still today. You probably know it. It’s a duet between Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell. It has even been used in movies when the characters are sharing their pledge to stand with each other-no matter what:

If you need me, call me,
No matter where you are
No matter how far,
Don’t worry, baby
Just call my name, I’ll be there in a hurry
You don’t have to worry

‘Cause baby, there ain’t no mountain high enough
Ain’t no valley low enough,
Ain’t no river wide enough
To keep me from getting to you, baby

Yes. You probably have heard it. But what does it have to do with God?

If you read through the last half of the book of Isaiah, you will read beautiful lines written of the coming of the blessings God would bestow on the people, and of a coming Messiah who would bring salvation and peace. He also tells of what is to come. Like the mountains and hills he had to make disappear before any of this could happen.

Like the Israelites heavy reliance and trust in things other than God. The Israelites believed in false prophets who didn’t offer God’s truth. They had a false sense of security. A security in man and his ways and power. They placed trust in their earthly kings. Kings God eventually removed. Kings who were defeated and taken over by those more terrifying and evil than anything their prophets could have predicted, who left them confused, unsafe, insecure, and feeling far from God.

We have some strongholds, too. Mountains and hills we place our faith in. Pledge allegiance to that can crumble in any season. Our jobs. Our varied affiliations. Our wealth. Our possessions. We find safety and security in these things, but what happens when they are gone?

What is left?

My faithful love for you will remain, my covenant of blessing will never be broken. Isaiah 54:10

Or…Just call my name, I’ll be there in a hurry
You don’t have to worry

He is left. God. Hopefully He doesn’t have to send you into exile just to prove your security is truly in Him alone for you to cling to Him; but He will do what it takes-scale all these mountains and hills to show you His love is what remains when everything else is gone.

His love is the mountain to cling to; the hill that won’t disappear. There is no mountain too high, and no valley too low for God to get to us. And it doesn’t fade away like those other things. Don’t wait until all those things are gone and your in exile to receive it right now-and every day thereafter.

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The Battle: Part 1

Tossing. Turning. Up. Down.

This was the position of my body through the night, but also my head. Awake for 3 hours while the devil wreaked havoc on my brain. For 3 solid hours he attacked my purpose. My integrity. All my regrets. He tapped into all the things that made me feel inadequate, useless, and less than.

“Nothing special. Worthless. Stupid. A fraud. Not worth listening to. Voiceless.”

For 3 solid hours.

Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour. 1 Peter 5:8

Spiritual warfare is real. Wrestling matches with the devil are inevitable when you are one who walks with God, especially when you believe you heard Him, but for whatever reason He has now become silent.

I was in the place where God’s call on my life had been the loudest. I knew for certain what He wanted me to do. And then He didn’t open the doors to make it happen. He placed roadblock after roadblock in my way instead.

So, it’s certainly no coincidence (because I don’t believe in them) that on the first night in this very same place, the devil used this to attempt to devour me. He used the fact that I had not done what I thought God had called me to do to wage an all out assault on my body, mind, and spirit.

Guilt. Shame. Regret. Recounting and bringing up every wrong turn taken. Every chapter still unwritten. All the purpose still not seen. Until I started to believe the lies. “You are nothing special. You won’t do anything that matters. Even God left you. Even He isn’t listening.”

The devil started the battle and I let him beat me almost senseless for 3 solid hours. Until I finally said: “No more.”

I went to war.

In a cabin room, in the middle of nowhere, I turned on my lamp, pulled out my pen and Bible and disputed the devil. Silenced his voice with God’s Word.

Therefore, put on every piece of God’s armor so you will be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil. Then after the battle you will still be standing firm. Put on salvation as your helmet, and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. Ephesians 6:10,17

My weapons told me and Satan that I was not inadequate, but that God would fill my inadequacies with His strength (2 Corinthians 12:10).

That I wasn’t worthless, because He counted me more special and worthy than even the birds he had given flight (Matthew 10:31).

And though I may not be doing what He originally called me to do, when He spoke to me in this place, He was most certainly with me, and was calling me to greater, simply through my obedience (Romans 8:28).

The devil may have started the battle, but my God…He will always win the war.

Note: I would like to think Satan stopped toying with me after this night, but not so. Come back for Part 2 of this story tomorrow!

Sending into the void

It was like any kid conversation. A stuffed animal. Used to talk about feelings. But not a typical day. Not really sure why exactly.

I hadn’t felt God answering me. I hadn’t understood the good in many things. I was emotional.

The one place I felt effective many days was here, in one of my many counseling spaces; because I had been setting some boundaries, and after many years of taking it home, I was finally learning to leave it here. Not take it personal. Not take on too much. Too much that wasn’t mine.

Oh, no the turtles hurt.” To which I asked what exactly the turtle did once he got hurt. “He asks Jesus to heal his wounds.”

I knew this was true. But I’m a skeptic in these situations now. I don’t trust where these questions come from some days. Where these conversations lead. I don’t trust that there could be an ulterior motive.

I don’t always like my doubting spirit.

“Yes. He may take a while to answer because he’s busy. But he always answers.” That’s what the child said to me. He always answers. He just takes a while. That was a solid answer. Because it was biblical.

He will bind up your wounds. He will answer when you call on him.

But see…I had been calling on him. For a REALLY long time. But I wasn’t so convinced he was listening.

And on that morning in particular, I was only focused on the things I couldn’t see. On the answers he hadn’t given me. On the prayers I just didn’t have the heart to pray anymore that morning, because I was so frustrated with the waiting.

Until I had someone say to me the very next day when I was discussing these prayers, and his silence, “Have you asked?” Of course I had. I had asked him every morning. Hadn’t I?

So on one particular morning, I asked him this: Lord, show me. Show me that all of this wasn’t for nothing. That all this praying and anything that I did for you will work out for your good. Just show me.

And I waited. And once again I heard nothing.

Until…

That morning we had a training at church. During our training we were placed into groups to share our thoughts on a number of questions. I can’t exactly recall one of the questions…the only thing I recall is the moment she pulled out the Bible. Her Bible. The moment she said, “I write little messages in it, so when I’m gone; they (her children) will have a piece of me, and will be able to know about Him, and what this means. It’s my legacy to them.”

I heard that, and then I heard this: “I told you, my word once sent out, will not return void.” It was a promise God had given to Isaiah that His Word would accomplish what He wanted it to-changed hearts, restored souls, for good, to bring light into the darkness. And isn’t that what I had been praying for all along?

And I lost it. I ran and hid in the bathroom and had a good cry.

Why?

Well, God hadn’t been silent. I was expecting my answer when I wanted it; and He…well, He answered during His time.

See, for quite some time I had written messages in a Bible also. I had given that Bible with all its messages in the hopes that His word would be understood, clung to, and touch hearts. I just couldn’t see the fruit, and it was bugging me.

Her Bible. His still small voice. It was a reminder, that the promise that God had been repeating to me from Romans 8:28, would be seen…even if I was not completely convinced it was true in this case. The promise that all things would “work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.”

So back to 7 year old faith.

He is working things out for good. He is healing. His spirit is working. He does hear us, and he is working on it; it’s just not in our time, it’s in His time. What we want right now, God knows…we may just have to wait.

But it doesn’t mean we can’t attach sticky notes, and messages to Bibles and continue our legacy. Sending out His word to fill the void.

In it…he’s still at work. If we believe like a child believes, and keep asking. Keep praying. Keep sending.

Y’all need Jesus

I love t-shirts. Let me rephrase that. I love t-shirts that have words on them. Sarcastic words. Rap words. Funny words. Jesus words. I like to say what needs to be said with my t-shirt. I started doing this at a time when I was silenced and ridiculed for outwardly expressing my faith more in one of the places I spent a great deal of time. I decided to wear it on a t-shirt instead.

Like this: “Y’all need Jesus!”

Now, I don’t have one that says this…though I do have one about coffee and Jesus, love and Jesus, prayer and Jesus, even tacos and Jesus. But I do have a sticker on the window of my vehicle that tells everyone who will read it that they all need Jesus.

But…here is the truth. We ALL need Jesus. Not just certain people. Not just the people who get on our nerves. Make fun of our faith, or our “Love Wins” t-shirts. ALL of us.

Every moment of our lives. Twenty-four, three six five. -Danny Gokey and Koryn Hawthorne

We all need prayer, because on any given day, we are all struggling. We all need comfort, because on any given day we may feel a little restless, a sense of chaos or loss; and need a little peace and hope. And there is not one who is immune to the devil who beats them down for every single bad thing they did, and knows exactly how to tell them, and repeat to them over and over and over that they are not good enough.

We ALL need Jesus.

Everybody needs a Savior
Even the ones who think they don’t
We’ve got stuff we hide, deep down inside
There’s so much that we don’t show

My t-shirts may be bold. I may speak a little sass with the messages I wear on the front of a tee. Words I can’t express out loud, because at a time I was silenced. I am often not one to hide from a story, but even I have wounds I don’t want to show.

I have stories I can’t yet quite tell, because there are still some cuts left to be healed. Band-aids not yet ready to be ripped off. I am not immune, and the prettied-up person with the button down sitting in the pew, too (not wearing a snarky tee)…oh, they got ’em, too. Things they hide, that is.

Basically, all of us, whether insiders or outsiders, start out in identical conditions, which is to say that we all start out as sinners. Scripture leaves no doubt about it: There’s nobody living right, not even one, nobody who knows the score, nobody alert for God. They’ve all taken the wrong turn; they’ve all wandered down blind alleys. Romans 3: 9-12, MSG

So, yes…We ALL need Jesus! Even t-shirt wearing, Jesus-loving, I bet you think I got it all together pastors. Prisoners. Beggars. Rich Folk.

We ALL need Him.

*I do not own rights to music/lyrics.

Giving me a “right” hand

We had put it off for a while. The dentist. The youngest needed a mouth full of work, and with anxiety and sensory needs that kept him from even liking to have his teeth cleaned…we had put it off for months. But we had prepared him for this day. Explained what would occur, how he would feel before. That he would sleep during. Wouldn’t feel a thing.

Of course, as a mom-I was the one having all the feels. As he received the first anesthetic that put him to sleep in the waiting room. As he laid his head onto my right shoulder, and uttered he felt “weird.” As he dozed off. As the dentist and anesthesiologist carried him off to the back, I sat with his mask and glasses beside me. Held them in my right hand and held back tears.

Wishing I could hold his hand in that room. Knowing I had to wait here, but there was someone else with him back there.

As I sat in that waiting room waiting for updates. To be given the OK to go back and be “mom” again, I thought about my own experience on his side. In rooms with anesthesia needles. Only doctors and nurses I didn’t know there to hold my hand.

I had recently had surgery of my own. Not my first experience like his, but an experience nonetheless. A fall on my wrist was the reason. Now, I am right-handed. And while I don’t know the suffering of losing a limb, I know the ordeal of having to learn to use your fingers, your grip, and your dominant hand in the way you once did. While I had a left hand to help do some of the things my dominant right hand couldn’t do, my left hand couldn’t write. It couldn’t type. It couldn’t do the things that had been so easy before. Like pick up anesthesia weary kids and carry them to waiting surgery beds. This right hand…it wasn’t the same.

I also hate feeling helpless, so needing help turning door knobs, or picking up a plate got old, and I was determined to get my strength back.

But…here’s the thing-He was with me just as He was with my wee one. In those rooms, and through that period of healing. Because He is the one who is always beside us giving His “right” hand.

Don’t be afraid, for I am with you.
Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you.
I will hold you up with my victorious right hand. Isaiah 41:10

And again in Psalm 18:35, we are reminded again: Your right hand supports me;
your help has made me great
.

And what is the significance of being provided God’s “right” hand? There are over 130 references in the Bible to the right hand, so surely there must be a significant reason for this. In many references are made to God’s strength. His help. His victory. Something I needed when I lost the use of my “right” hand. Something I often feel I have nothing left of when it comes to being a mom.

And I know I am not the only one. Parenting is not for the faint of heart. You will have seasons when things seem easy. And then a roadblock comes along and the road becomes long and hard again. You wonder if you have what it takes, or if you are just messing your kids up. Or maybe they are messing you up. You really can’t tell anymore.

Why the right hand? Why didn’t God choose the left? Think about it-the right hand of God? It denotes a location of honor, and according to Matthew Henry’s Commentary, when thinking about the reference to the “right hand” in the passage above, Isaiah 41:10-the Israelites were God’s honored people, His chosen. The reference to God’s right hand was meant to provide encouragement to them. That they would not be abandoned, be left discouraged. That he would strengthen them, help them, not allow them to break, and prevent them from falling too hard.

You know who else is honored? Moms. Anyone who is “like a mom.” Or who cares for others.

And so He will do the same for you.

Give you his “right” hand.

So that when your wee one, reaches for yours when he is fresh out of anesthesia and flipping out, you are there to give it-oh so gently, while you rub his soft, long curls with your left one.

When you get home, look down at that hand, the one with little strength to pick up anything, you scoop that wee one up into your arms anyway, because he is yours. Like you are His. Knowing you won’t leave him, like He hasn’t left you. You will stay by his side through this fight that he doesn’t get, just like He stayed by you.

Like He has so many times before. By your “right” side fighting for you. As you fought for him. For so many. You. You honored one. You. You chosen one. You who may be weak and broken. Fallen down for a time. Without the strength of your hand, but never without your constant “right” hand.