What sweet words I find in Isaiah 43.
Words to remember as I travel through life. Or at least until life sweeps me off my feet. What do I do with these promises? When life is upside down and flames set every dream ablaze, are these words true?When life is upside down and flames set every dream ablaze, are God's words true? - Karen Smith Click To Tweet
No Words Would Come
Four miles from my home, I dragged myself into a hotel and reserved their last room. The sweet African American gentleman behind the desk asked if I was okay. I could not utter a single word, not even a whisper. I merely shook my head “no” as tears streamed down both sides of my face spilling onto the hotel counter. I fumbled for my credit card to pay for my room. With so many tears, I couldn’t see to sign my name. Awkwardly, I took my key as the quiet-spoken gentleman asked, “Should I call someone for you? Would you like for me to call the police?” There was much concern in his voice. Once again, no words would come. Another nod “no” was all I found.
Armed with necessities for the night, I found my room and collapsed on the bed. I wanted to go to sleep and wake up the next day with a new set of life circumstances. However, sleep was not coming, only tears.
My life had fallen apart.
Not only swept off my feet, I was drowning.
- A few weeks previously, my husband had completed a week-long chemo drug for the Progressive MS taking a toll on his body and our family.
- I had three kids at home who needed their mama and their dad. Not to mention two weeks earlier they all three had head lice.
- So stressed, I had not eaten for several many weeks and my body was shutting down from lack of nutrients.
- Days prior, my husband fell and broke his hip. He was transferred to a rehab hospital and I, well, fell apart. I couldn’t stay with him in rehab until he could get a private room. I was so sick and such an emotional mess when I left his bedside, I couldn’t go home to my kids. I was desperate and alone.
Every dream I had for my life was gone.
The nice secure life I planned for my children was non-existent.
My faith was nearly gone.
This promise in Isaiah of not being overtaken by waves or set ablaze, well, it was for lack of a better word, hogwash!
Fear had invaded the deep crevices of my heart.
Would I ever get my husband to the point I could take care of him at home again?
Would he survive being in rehab hospital with a depleted immune system from chemo?
How would I ever learn to eat again?
How could I take care of three kids and my husband in the hospital at the same time while being so sick myself?
Laying on that hotel bed, questions rolled over in my head and my heart. Soon that all too familiar feeling of not being able to breathe overwhelmed me. The first time I felt that feeling, I thought I was dying. I was certain an ambulance needed to be called. However, I learned lack of oxygen to my brain was called a panic attack.
If only that gentleman from the front was in my room, he would call for help. I would nod my head “yes” this time. But alas, he was not there. I was alone with my fear-filled heart and my run-out faith.
This was a defining moment for me. It was a moment I desperately desired someone to be with me, but I also wanted no one with me. A moment where my faith came to a crisis, would I believe the promises in God’s word or would I turn my back because He had failed me?A moment where my faith came to a crisis, would I believe the promises in God’s word or would I turn my back because He had failed me? - Karen Smith Click To Tweet
When every ounce of me had drown away in tears and I was at the complete end of myself both physically and emotionally, I sat motionless on the strange, unfamiliar bed. There was nothing left of me. I sat.
As I sat, depleted of all my tears, energy, dreams and desires, God whispered, “Come my child. Come sit with me. Let me give you comfort.”
“God, I don’t even think you love me anymore. You couldn’t care less about me. And I don’t want you to comfort me. You have let me down. I don’t trust you.”
And God whispered back, “Can you tell me more about how you really feel about me?”
My thoughts were God doesn’t want me to tell Him how I feel about Him. A good Christian girl would never say the things I felt. However, God continued to nudge my heart. And for the first time, I unloaded my heart on God. I told God how I felt about Him, about my dreams that been set ablaze, and the life I no longer had. I verbalized my fear-filled heart loudly to Him. I informed him that my run-down faith had me exhausted.
God’s surprising response to my angry, fear-filled, faithless words was, “Thank you. Thank you for sharing the innermost part of your heart with me. Just let me give you rest for your weary soul.” God begin ministering His love, kindness, gentleness, and faithfulness to my raw heart when I was real with Him.
God met a fear- filled girl with a run-down faith in a hotel room that night.
At the complete end of herself, she shared her innermost thoughts and feelings with Him. And there in an unfamiliar place, a redeeming work was done. That girl would never be the same. Her relationship with God would always be different, and that’s a good thing. When she left the hotel, her fears weren’t gone. They still existed, but her faith was greater than her fears.
Does being a fear-filled girl with a run-down faith resonate with you? God desires to fill you with comfort and hope in the midst of your fear-filled heart and run-out faith. Will you let Him? Will you allow your faith to be elevated over your fears?
Take away: God desires to fill you with comfort and hope in the midst of your fear-filled heart and run-out faith.
Karen Smith, Contributing Writer
Karen lives in Madison, Alabama with her husband and three children. Karen graduated in 1996 from Ouachita Baptist University in Arkadelphia, AR. Karen has served as Preschool and Children’s Pastor and has been involved in women’s ministry for many years leading small groups, making hospital visits, organizing retreats, and encouraging the hearts of women. Karen now blogs at Glimpses of Faith and Struggles. What started out communicating medical facts, has become a place where Karen uses life experiences to encourage others in their life journey. When she’s not busy caring for her family or writing, you might find her cooking or crafting. You can find Karen online at Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and A Wife Like Me, a website dedicated for encouraging wives in their marriages.
Want to Read More Stories of People Reaching Beyond Their Fears?
A Baby Step of Faith by Heather Norman Smith
Redefining Fear by Jennifer Cotney
Flying Through the Air with Faith by Amy Merritt
Faith, Fear, and Fire Hydrants by Chip Mattis
The Dreaded F Word by Norma Poore
His Hope in the Darkness by Alynda Long