30 Oct 2012
by Christina Stolaas
Note from Anne: We don’t normally post several times a day on Know Your Value, but in light of the catastrophic damages that hit the east coast yesterday when Hurricane Sandy arrived, it seemed necessary to add in a bit of extra encouragement. I love the verse from Isaiah that our guest blogger, Christina Stolaas, writes about in this post. I hope that God’s word lifts you up today and brings you peace, no matter where you live.
Doesn’t the way God orchestrates certain events, provisions, people in your life ever absolutely surprise you? I’ve learned that life is astonishingly more beautiful when I take the time to observe and note the fingerprints of God in my life. But, the fact that these gentle whispers of His presence actually make me drop my jaw in wonder, so regularly, actually concerns me. My faith is often so little, narrow minded, immature and undeveloped that in my times of need, when I am graced with His overwhelming presence, what precedes my gratitude is often absolute shock. I’m awestruck that God cares enough to allow me to glimpse at His presence in the midst of my circumstances.
I had one of those moments the other night. My bible “just happened” to be in my car, so I sat under the stars and pulled out what I call the “God, you pick a page method.” C’mon, don’t tell me that isn’t how anyone else reads the Bible. You know, gently drop your Bible and see what pages it opens to….if it opens to the OT…drop it again and get a redo (kidding).
So the pages fell open to Isaiah 43: 2-5. The powerful words felt as thought they literally lifted off the page and spoke directly to my heart of such little faith:
“Do not fear, for I have redeemed you;
I have summoned you by name; you are mine.
When you pass through the waters,
I will be with you;
and when you pass through the rivers,
they will not sweep over you.
When you walk through the fire,
you will not be burned;
the flames will not set you ablaze.
For I am the Lord your God,
the Holy One of Israel, your Savior;
I give Egypt for your ransom,
Cush[a] and Seba in your stead.
Since you are precious and honored in my sight,
and because I love you,
I will give people in exchange for you,
nations in exchange for your life.
Do not be afraid, for I am with you;”
I want to keep this short and sweet, but I had to share this. Maybe, the physical and emotional circumstances sometimes make you feel like you are drowning or set ablaze (mine do!). But hear me, I am certain that God spoke in such literal terms because if He can protect us from such disasters that can destroy the body, then how much MORE capable is He of quieting anything else that is overwhelmingly scary in your life right now?
Today, just rest in the the fact that “I AM” is with you. You are precious in His sight, you are known by name, you are His– and whatever lies ahead, whatever, His promise is to be with you.
Christina Stolaas is an energetic mom to four adorable young kids. In her free time, she enjoys writing, training for roads races, and passionately pursuing a deeper walk with Jesus. Through a rough childhood, she has learned to earnestly trust in the Sovereignty of God and seek to be “fruitful in suffering” as God continues to mold her to His likeness and bring beauty for ashes! (Isaiah 61:3)