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Weekly Devotion

May 30 2021

Deuteronomy 31:6 Be strong and take heart, and have no fear of them: for it is the Lord your God who is
going with you; he will not take away his help from you.

Over the years, I – like most of us – have faced difficult times: heart ache, stress, and all other matter of
things that go bump in the night.

I don’t know about you, but over this past year, things seem to be more stressful than ever before.
People are less patient, less giving, less gracious and less kind than ever before. Facebook, Instragram,
Twitter, etc. have become platforms to scream at each other — finding ways in which we are divided
rather than united.

This feels very reminiscent of the early 1980s when the economy was crashing, recession was
skyrocketing and people were on edge and frequently on each other’s last nerve. With the recession and
high interest rates (13-18% interest on home mortgages), high unemployment, and loss of job stability
and security, people were feeling vulnerable, scared, and angry (very much like many of us have been
feeling for the past year).

At the time, my husband and I were just getting started. We were newly married, and my husband was
starting graduate school out of state. Mind you, I had never left my home state prior to this time, so
moving hundreds of miles away, without a job was daunting. But taking this step in the worst economic
recession in recent history was frightening, scary and stressful. Would I be able to get a job? Would we
be able to find and pay for an apartment? Would we be able to have food on the table? And moments
of doubt – what are we doing, are we nuts? Maybe we should stay where we are and not make the
leap? But we took a big breath (literally), asked God for guidance and strength, and with trust and faith
in God, took the first fateful step into our future.

This past year, we had to, once again, face our vulnerabilities. We are not as young as we once were —
and being older, we now have health issues that put us in the “vulnerable” group. Our son lives in
Colorado, so we have not been able to visit or see him or our brothers and sisters, nieces and nephews,
for more than 18 months. Our country seems more divided than ever with both sides less willing to
compromise or entertain the idea of listening with grace and humility to the other side.
So, we found ourselves needing to do the same thing – to take a big breath, ask God for guidance and
strength, and with trust and faith, take that step into our next chapter.

These past 15 months have been challenging, heart breaking, and stressful. Some or our friends and
family have lost loved ones. Our lives have been forever changed. For our children and grandchildren,
this will have been a defining moment in their lives – the year of COVID and political unrest. But with the
grace of God, this too shall pass.

So, I ask God, once again, for guidance and strength: to allow myself a moment to close my eyes and
breathe; to open myself to his guiding presence; to take away my burdens; to let the stress and heart
ache melt from my body and soul; and through His grace and faith, to walk into the next chapter,
whatever that may be. And trust that this is His plan for me.