Father God, You are my Creator. You know the very troubles my soul endures, tribulations of my mind and body. You tell me I am Yours and I believe You. I know You and love You. Thank You for holding me in the cleft of Your Rock. Thank You for soothing my trembling ways, my anxiousness, and my weariness with the world. Hold me closely, Lord, as I do not want to be pulled into the torrent. I want to be with You as a rock holds its own in the midst of a raging river. Eventually, the waters will become still and the rock will be able to lie there quietly. May I sacrifice myself quietly to You, wholeheartedly to You. May I be close always, Sweet Lord. Amen.
Hebrew Shabbat (שַׁבָּת), “to cease”
1 John 4:16
“In the world ye shall have tribulation”:
Lord Jesus, Thou saidst it of old.
There dark are the desolate mountains,
The night winds are cold.
But safe from the storm and the tempest
My soul hath a cell;
There ever, beside the still waters,
With Jesus I dwell.
There, hushed from the strife and the sorrow,
Alone and apart,
In chambers of peace and of stillness—
That Home is His Heart.*
Spending time with the Lord, in His Word, walking with Him down the paths of peace, through the rushing rivers of turbulence in our lives, standing together in the midst of sorrow—that is where He wants me, where I want to be. Yet, how often do I sit in the midst of my own sinful nature, whether it be words I have spoken and cannot take back, or acted in an un-Christlike manner before a friend whom I am mentoring, or holding onto jealously or pridefulness? There I wallow, I cry, I feel unworthy of Jesus Who loves me as I am which allows satan to grab me, taking me further into these places.
My relationship with Christ is foremost. I am to flee these thoughts, these actions, these feelings. I am to turn to God, to my Rock, my Redeemer, and my Refuge. There I am to stay, in the cleft of the Rock where He keeps me from the one who wants to take the peace and joy from me. Doubting has no place in a believer. I need to believe God for He is my Stronghold. I am a believer in the One True God, the Only God.
“If you have not a God you can perceive, have a God you can believe.”*
When doubts, thoughts, distractions arrive at my doorstep, I am to close that door and not allow them in. I am to resist, for the Bible says, “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” James 4:7 If the sinful ways, the thoughts of pride, the feelings of unworthiness, continue to surface, I am to lay them before the Lord, again and again. “Surrender, Linda, surrender. Take these to the Cross. Lay down, Linda, and be still in the cleft. Let the grace of God bathe you and quiet you.” Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded. James 4:8
Little children, you are from God and have overcome them,
1 John 4:4
whoever is not from God does not listen to us.
1 John 4:6
“Faith lies in the depths; we have it, we know it, and we have believed it for a long time now.”*