It happened again, as it always does when I finally just let go…when I make a point of tuning everything else out—the mind chatter, the negative self-talk, the to-do list—and just sink into my morning quiet time with God. Sometimes there’s just nothing left to do but relax in God’s waiting arms.

For me, this time, it began as I read a short but beautiful bit of near-poetry written almost 3,000 years ago:

12  “I, yes I, am the one who comforts you. So why are you afraid of mere humans, who wither like the grass and disappear?
13  Yet you have forgotten the Lord, your Creator, the one who stretched out the sky like a canopy and laid the foundations of the earth. Will you remain in constant dread of human oppressors? Will you continue to fear the anger of your enemies? Where is their fury and anger now? It is gone!
14  Soon all you captives will be released! Imprisonment, starvation, and death will not be your fate!
15  For I am the Lord your God, who stirs up the sea, causing its waves to roar. My name is the Lord of Heaven’s Armies.
16  And I have put my words in your mouth and hidden you safely in my hand. I stretched out the sky like a canopy and laid the foundations of the earth. I am the one who says to Israel, ‘You are my people!’”  (Isaiah 51:12-16)

In the midst of oozing into Isaiah’s comforting word-picture, one sentence from verse 16 jumped out at me and set me on my way for this morning’s SAP:


Isaiah 51:16: “And I have put my words in your mouth and hidden you safely in my hand.”


How can I be filled with anxiety knowing this? KNOWING it.

That’s what strikes me in this moment: That I truly have done none of the things I brag about on my own. Not The Book, not the web site, not my family; not the accomplishments of my old career or the good that might come out of my current relationships, volunteer gigs, and everyday encounters.

It’s all God—the One who “stretched out the sky like a canopy and laid the foundations of earth.” The One who comforts me, who freed me from captivity, and has hidden me safely in His hand.

How can I be afraid when the Lord of Heaven’s Armies—the One “who stirs up the sea, causing its waves to roar”—goes before me and surrounds me on all sides?


Father, thank You for giving me Your whoosh of peace after more than week of being frozen in anxiety. It happened in an instant when Isaiah’s words reminded me that You are God, and I am not.

Thank You for showing me through that week of angst that trying to pound out a solution on my own is senseless. I should know that by now, shouldn’t I? So I thank You for your never-ending patience with me as I continue learning the hard way…the story of my life. Amen.



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