Sunday, June 03, 2007

The Greatest Comfort

  • a friend who just lost her aunt
  • another friend whose husband found himself in the ER with a ruptured appendix
  • a third friend whose 2 yr. old precious, little girl is fighting for her life in the hospital with Leukemia (please pray for Alivia)
  • a conflict with my husband
  • other friends who are discouraged by the challenges their newborns are giving them
  • a catty competition with a caricature of a woman who most likely doesn't exist
  • a client my husband's firm might acquire which would mean a 2nd busy season this summer
  • a limited food budget I've got to stay within to feed a family of 5 and no inspiration to cook
  • whether to put my children into their sunday school class and risk having them get sick (which has happened almost EVERY time we've done so this calendar year)
  • failing to respond to emails and phone calls, feeling like a failure of a friend
  • even seeing dirt under my sons' fingernails too many days in a row

All these things and more have served to disquiet my heart this week.

So often recently, I have walked around with a low grade agitated spirit. I find myself short tempered with my children, not tolerating my husband's sin, and scurrying around trying to meet the needs of others in my own strength. In my disquieted state, I've tried to hush my mind and heart with many things: writing more to do lists, reading a plethora of cookbooks for inspiration to feed my family, assessing the needs of others and offering to meet those needs without really prayerfully considering whether I am the one to meet those needs, giving advice, making phone calls and lots of apologies. All these things, while not necessarily wrong in themselves, have not served to ultimately quiet my heart.

There is only one thing that has consistently hushed my tumultuous, emotion driven thoughts, and that is the gospel. Only when I've taken time to come back to the gospel truths has my heart truly been at peace. When I've listened to worship songs that declare these truths to me:

I will glory in my Redeemer
Whose priceless blood has ransomed me...
Who crushed the power of sin and death


The Lord is not our equal
He doesn't need the help of man
Who could ever give Him counsel
Who could ever stop His Sovereign plan...

He punishes the wicked
Pours judgment out on sin
Yet this Champion of Justice
Is a Savior if you call on Him.

My heart has been comforted by God's Word that also tells me of God's kindness and provision to me through the gospel:

Teach me your way, O LORD,
and I will walk in your truth;
give me an undivided heart,
that I may fear your name.

I will praise you, O Lord my God, with all my heart;
I will glorify your name forever.

For great is your love toward me;
you have delivered me from the depths of the grave.
Ps. 86:11-13

I've tried many things to quiet my heart, but only one thing consistently works: the gospel truths. God's word is again proven true: "You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you." Isaiah 26:3


Leanne said...

Thanks for this Briana - it was very timely for me. I will be praying for you as well.

Zoanna said...

I needed that, too. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

It is so true that whether it is a big crisis, or a mini-crisis, our hearts are so prone to wander from the gospel, which is our source of peace. thanks for the reminder.

peg said...

AMEN, Sista!!
Our eteam is here and this is a great reminder for me!!
Let's fix our eyes on Jesus!

Anonymous said...

I hear ya loud & clear! During this past week, I found the Word of God to be more of a place of refuge than ever. I could honestly say I was doing fine when people asked (okay, it took a day or 3!), b/c even though my world was shaky, my God is solid.

FishMama said...

the first part (the unsettled one) sounds/feels so much like me today. I hope I can be that second part...peaceful in God. Thanks

Anonymous said...

Dear Briana, I know we haven't met, but the more I read about you, the more amazing I think you are. I didn't realize you had to do all that you do on a limited budget on top of everything else! I will pray for you. I haven't reminded myself of this lately, but one of God's names is Jehovah Jireh, God will provide. He is so faithful. I believe he will provide you with the resources and inspiration for your cooking needs. God loves you and made you so special! I know this because I've laughed out loud already several times at your wonderful way of looking at wifehoood and motherhood. (I've also shared your outlook on burnout with him - just think of what a ministry you were doing without knowing- my husband is not a Christian, but I think some of what you said resonated!)