“True to your word, you let me catch my breath and send me in the right direction. Even when the way goes through Death Valley, I’m not afraid when you walk at my side”
(Psalm 23:2-4, MSG).
Today would’ve been my beautiful, God-fearing, tea-sipping, flower-planting, Gaither-loving, piano-playing, curry chicken cooking mother’s 82nd birthday. But after a long battle with COVID, Pauline Hutchinson, died last year on February 3rd. It was one of the worse days of my life. Eight weeks before losing mom, I suddenly lost my younger brother, a blow that stunned me with crippling anguish.
Despite the horrific losses I experienced, I had comfort knowing that my mom and brother went to heaven. Psalm 23 consoled my grieving heart, showing me that I never have to be afraid with God by my side. I also believed the tragedy would have brought my entire family closer together than ever before. We’d enjoyed a close-knit relationship throughout my life, and I saw things working out no other way. I was wrong. The deaths devastated our family in ways I believed could only happen to others.
I continue to hold out a desperate hope that the connection between the extended family will return before being wholly overcome by division. I don’t believe sorrow and pain get better with time. They often get worse—if God isn’t in the middle.
I’m convinced breakthroughs happen during the challenging phases of our lives when honoring God by giving Him the pain and sorrow that keeps us from sleeping and soaks our pillows at night. When embarking on a journey to repair our relationship with others, we must first seek to be sure God is in the middle. Because He alone can handle every detail, every fear, and every heartache.
God often calls us to accomplish something significant with Him at the center. Whether it’s repairing relationships or chasing a seemingly impossible dream, our Father wants to be the one helping us through it. Whatever it is, we can lay our fears, doubts, anxieties, and misgivings on Him.
Dear Lord, thank you for leading me when I’m discouraged, sorrowful, and overwhelmed with doubt. Sometimes I don’t sense your guidance. But help me remember you never leave me, and I’m grateful for that. Thank you for directing me on challenging paths and displaying that you want the best for me. Please continue to lead me with your perfect will and always be in the middle of every good and bad thing I experience. Amen.
Your turn: Do you have an example of how you allowed God to—be in the middle—to intervene in your life? What breakthroughs are you being challenged to pray about?