About this time last year, our little family when out to dinner at a local Mexican restaurant. Dallas had been hit by an ice storm which is rare, fun, and exciting here in Texas! Getting out for dinner was pretty risky considering the ice covered streets and our non-four wheel drive car. But we arrived safely and enjoyed ourselves. After a yummy meal of fajitas, we decided to stop by the drugstore for something. At the time it seemed really urgent, but I cannot even remember what it was!
I told my husband I would just “run in” and grab the very important item while he stayed in the car with our three boys. So out I hopped out of the car and somewhat pranced through the icy parking lot, hurrying through the cold. I can’t remember now if it was before I entered the store or after I had grabbed the very important item and was heading out. It’s all a blur…but anywhoo…in one swift, icy moment, this former ballerina’s feet completely sailed right from under her and landed her right on her catush, right there on the front sidewalk under the big Walgreens sign. Hello, ouch. I laid there on the ice…ice that I certainly had not seen. I completely lost my footing and went down so fast I didn’t even know what happened.
Thank goodness I didn’t bonk my head, but I laid there a few seconds just stunned. I looked back towards our car, and there my sweet husband stood looking at me like…what just happened! Half embarrassed, half in pain, I waddled my way back to the car, much more carefully this time.
I thought about this story today as I was thinking about how I so easily do that in life. I can be going about my day, doing the things I get to do, being who God made me to be, and then out of nowhere, something just trips me up, pulls my strength right from under me, and I feel like I’ve fallen and I can’t get back up! I don’t know how I landed there, but God, our sweet, sweet, God always picks me back up and helps me find my footing again.
You see, I get tripped up if I start looking back in the past, too far into the future, or over to what’s going on in the newsfeed. I get tripped up because I’ve put my hope and my security in everything but God. Sometimes I don’t know how it happens, but I certainly know when I am flat on the ground in a sense, tripped up by life. And that’s not a fun place to be. It’s a place of forgetfulness, where I’ve forgotten where my hope is found.
I found myself in Psalm 62 today…
“He alone is my rock and my salvation, my fortress; I shall not be greatly shaken.” (vs. 2)
So often we (raising my hand here!) put our hope and our strength in everything but God ALONE. ALONE. That word grabs me today. Often I put my hope and strength in God and something else with it. But Scripture implores us to put our hope in Him alone. The word FORTRESS stands out to me too. When I think of a fortress, I think of a secure, sturdy, impenetrable blockade that nothing can get through. That’s what God wants to be for us, but we tend to make other things be our fortress. (people, dreams, appearance, money, job, etc.) All these other things leave us tripped up and on our catush!
There’s this sweet prayer down in verse 5 that David penned to the Lord, and I think it is such a beautiful prayer to help us grab hold of God instead of things…
“For God alone, O my soul, wait in silence, for my hope is from Him.”
Instead of prancing from one thing to the next for satisfaction, I long to take a holy pause and point my soul right to God’s heart and in a sense just say, “Hey soul, wait in silence for God to fill you up. Because, remember…your hope is from Him.” Instead of grabbing for the next thing, something bigger or better, or more…I long to bring all my neediness to God alone to satisfy. Otherwise, my feet get swept right from under me, and I lose my sense of identity, purpose, and calling to lesser things. I get tied up in all the wrong things instead of securing my footing in the strong fortress of God.
So, be careful if you are prancing on ice! Better yet, grab hold of God as your strong fortress! He is like no other! He will keep you strong and on your feet! And when you find yourself in a heap, feeling like a mess, and oh that will still happen sometimes, remember to reach up for Him. Remember to take a holy pause and let Him fill you like nothing else. Then stay strong, not in your own might, but in His.
Prayer: “Sweet Lord, may I look to You as my strong fortress. May my soul find it’s hope in You in alone. Help me lay aside the things I try and put my significance in and instead find the most secure security in knowing You are my fortress. Steady my heart. Steady my footing. Secure my hope. May this upcoming new year ahead of me be one of secure hope in You. I choose You.”