The past few months have been tight for us financially. Our jobs can be inconsistent, and people, unreliable. Yet, somehow we have all that we need. I think about David’s reflections in Psalm 23, when he remembers that God is true to His name, and he doesn’t have to be afraid. I fall back on Jesus's words in Matthew 6, when He tells me, “Do not worry. Focus on me and the peace I have for you. Seek my kingdom, my perspective. Remember who provides all things.”
Growing up, these passages of scripture would always resonate with me, and being the perfect Christian kid I was (LOL), I “hid them in my heart.” The irony here is that I was never in want. I never worried about basic needs like food or clothing or shelter. The tragedies of my middle school days pale in comparison to the worries I experience now. The pain in those days was more identity and worth based, so those specific Bible verses were taken generally, as an overarching depiction of God’s character. But now, I’ve had to take them literally after risking comfort to pursue art and beauty and relationship, and especially after taking a non-traditional route into adult responsibilities.
So I gave into old habits.
I started rushing around and doing everything. And being everything. And filling every role. And never feeling enough. And never resting. And never breathing.
But these words always come back to me when I stop to draw or write. In those brief moments, my Father whispers to me truths about myself. He reminds me who He is:
“He restores my soul.” |Psalm 23:4|
“I have made you, and I will carry you; I will sustain you, and I will rescue you.” |Isaiah 46:4|
“Do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself.” |Matthew 6:34|
Maybe these truths can help you too? I never realized how rich and deep they were until I had to experience being in need or the fear of uncertainty.
Now, I constantly have to remind myself that I cannot make decisions out of fear or panic— both manipulators that never come from my Father. Now, I analyze my motives and intentions. When difficulties arise, I must patiently wait for Him to move and trust that He is in control. I have to rest in Him.
I’m learning more about what rest looks like for me. Right now, it seems like a call to stop striving and just be with Him. It’s that nudge in my soul to pray. It’s saying no when I feel overwhelmed. It’s saying yes to the things that I love. It’s laughing and cracking jokes and crying. It's soaking in moments with family and friends. It’s tight hugs from my husband.
It’s releasing the pressure that gradually builds from being everything to everyone, from relentlessly seeking approval, from overflowing work days.
So, this is the beauty of my life in Christ: It’s knowing my Father’s character and acting because of it. I can move and fail and risk, knowing He will carry and sustain and restore. And I can sit and rest and feel, knowing He holds everything together. This is where freedom lies for me.