That's something that rarely happens in my world, as I'm sure you could say the same. We all have things that fill up our day with noise, whether it be jobs, school, family, traffic, a neighbor who has a dog that won't stop barking, you name it, we have noise.
As you may already know, I am currently pregnant with my second child and have a beautiful, yet crazy to the core, two year old. I am a stay at home mom and it's very easy to get overwhelmed with the day to day actions and emotions necessary to make our house function, which most definitely includes patience (oh lordy, the patience). The past few days though, I have found myself more overwhelmed than usual.
My family and I enjoyed an amazing Christmas break. Half the time was spent near our home and the other half was spent at the beach. I know what you're thinking about, “aww poor Katie, she had to spend time at a relaxing beach.” Now listen here, mom's of young kids know and can attest that “vacations” aren't vacations when you have little children. I mean returning from a vacation alone and back to reality is sometimes more stressful than going anywhere. I need a vacation for my vacation (can I get an amen?)
So anywho, as we've returned back to reality, I've found myself with so little patience and a whole lot of anxiety.
Let me give you a little glimpse into why.
We are currently selling our house and have to be moved out in a few short weeks, we are trading in our car for a family, friendly SUV (yep, no van), I have a rather large deadline for a client that needs completed before I have my next child, and we are currently doing a ton of stuff this month for the youth ministry. To add on to the fun. My second child who is growing nicely in my belly, wants to make his appearance a tad bit early. I went to the doctor and they explained that he literally can come at any time. (ANYTIME. Cue freakout) I have cervical issues that caused me to be on bed rest with my daughter and now the cervical issues have returned with my son. We just need him to be in there at least 3 more weeks so his lungs will be fully developed. Oh, all the while I have another child to raise, a house to clean and a husband to love. Talk about completely overwhelming.
So in walks anxiety. Nice to see you again.
With all of this going on, I found myself lacking faith. Faith to trust that God is in the midst of this crazy with me. That He sees me and is walking with me through this bomb of busyness and noise.
I began to read Exodus 14. The story of Moses parting the Red Sea. Let me give you a little brief summary of the story of you don't already know it.
The Lord spoke to Moses after freeing the Israelites from slavery in Egypt and asked him to lead them down towards the Red Sea to get the Pharaoh to pursue them. Once the Pharaoh was to send his men to find the Israelites, God was going to make His glory known to the Egyptians. So Moses obeyed the Lord's command and led the Israelites down a different path towards the Red Sea. Once the Israelites saw that the Pharoah's men were on their way with chariots, they immediately began crying out to Moses.
“They said to Moses, "Is it because there are no graves in Egypt that you have taken us away to die in the wilderness? What have you done to us in bringing us out of Egypt? Is not this what we said to you in Egypt: 'Leave us alone that we may serve the Egyptians'? For it would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in the wilderness." Exodus 14:11-12
Then Moses said something that struck my heart in that moment. Out of all the times I have read this story, I have never had that verse come and slap me in the face.
And Moses said to the people, "Fear not, stand firm, and see the salvation of the Lord , which he will work for you today. For the Egyptians whom you see today, you shall never see again. The Lord will fight for you, and you have only to be silent." Exodus 14:13-14 ESV
Wow….The Lord is fighting for me. How could I so easily forget that the One who created the moon and stars has my back. That He is in control and loves me with a love that is unimaginable. All I need to do is trust in His plan. He's fighting for me. He's working out everything for my good whether I see it or not.
Well if you don't know the end of the story, the Lord led Moses and the Israelites to the Red Sea so that it could be parted in such a glorious and majestic way that only the Creator of the universe could pull off. The Israelites were led to safety as the Egyptians were consumed by the waters. The Israelites were in awe of their Creator and had such fear for the Lord and His glory was on display.
After being slapped in the face with Scripture and God's faithfulness, I began to re-read verse 14 over and over. It states that all I need to do is to be silent. Silent. Sit in the still security of my Lord and Savior’s presence. The very thing I so easily forget or write off with the excuse of busyness. The very thing that sometimes I don't think exists. The very thing I avoid at times to just be entertained by things of this world. Silence. But how could I forget that my stillness brings His presence and His presence changes everything. Literally everything.
I caught myself feeling like an Israelite, wondering where is my God and the whole time God was crying back saying I never left, you did. Come and spend some time in silence with me. Sit in my presence a little longer. Enjoy my loving embrace and allow yourself to feel grace. Rest upon my shoulders, Beloved. You need time with me.
Cue the ugly tears.
In the middle of my unfaithfulness and terrible self discipline, the Lord is faithful. He reminded me that He IS INDEED fighting for me, but the beautiful thing is the battle is already won. He just wants me.
Wow. Cue more ugly tears (pregnancy hormones, man...they'll get ya)
It's amazing though what a small still moment did to shatter my overwhelming, complaining, anxiety-filled emotions and blow them all away. Now all I'm left with His grace, love and patience.
So if you're where I'm at and you have a thousand reasons to complain, grumble, and be anxious, please meet with Him. Spend some time in the stillness with Him. How easily we forget the feeling of His presence. Just get yourself a taste, He is faithful and fighting for you, just as He is fighting for me in the midst of this craziness I call my life.
His love is and always will be enough.
For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8:38-39 ESV