Monday, July 21, 2014

#1 Way to Sleep Peacefully

“In the multitude of my anxieties within me,
Your comforts delight my soul.” Psalm 94:19

I quote this verse often. To myself. To others. It’s a deep, ministering scripture, and a reminder where to focus during hard times.

But I’ve never dug any further into the passage. Until last week.

“Anxieties” translates into disquieting thoughts. Ever had any of those? The kind that keeps you tossing and turning throughout the night. Preoccupied during the day. They grow like mountain before your very eyes.

Me too.

Let’s look at “comforts” in the Hebrew. It comes from the root word “nacham” which means to console, to have compassion on.

Through the Lord’s mercies we are not consumed, because 
His compassions fail not.” Lamentations 3:22

In other words: In the middle of all my mountainous disquieting thoughts, causing me great anxiety, I know that your compassions that fail not will console me. Because you, O LORD, are merciful. They are new every morning.

What is this consoling, this compassion like? What does it do? It delights the soul. I think of delight and words such as joy, happiness, smiles, sunshine, strength, dancing…they come to mind. What comes to your mind? It’s interesting however, what that word “delight” actually means in the Hebrew.
It’s the word “sha’a’” and get this! It means, “to be smeared over, to be blinded, to smear eyes shut, overspread.”

When all the disquieting thoughts swell like Everest, we should slip into His Word, into His Presence and let Him smear our eyes shut, through His tender compassion. Let Him overspread us. As moms to young babies. Gingerly, coating them with creamy, soothing, sweet-smelling baby lotion creating a calming effect. We generally do it before bedtime to ease them into a sweet and peaceful rest.

Disquieting thoughts do not give us rest. We need Jesus to smear us with His love. His mercy, and His compassion.

It’s an experience.

He says in Revelation 3:18, “…anoint your eyes with eye salve, that you may see.”

We need Him to smear our eyes shut so the mountain, our circumstances, our crisis fades away. Until we’re blinded.

“For we walk by faith, not by sight.” 2 Corinthians 5:7

Love the Message version:

If God hadn’t been there for me,

    I never would have made it.
The minute I said, “I’m slipping, I’m falling,”
    your love, God, took hold and held me fast.
When I was upset and beside myself,
    you calmed me down and cheered me up.


Maybe you’re beside yourself right now. Move over, let Jesus get beside you and smear you over with love and compassion that fails not.
You’ll be blinded, yet see more clearly than ever before!

Can you think of a time God consoled you and helped you get through a difficult time? What scripture verses or songs (or both) helped soothe you?




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7 comments:

  1. I love Romans 8:38-39 because it reminds me how big my God is and that we can't be separated. I also love Psalm 27:1. I also have a quote on my desk from St. Teresa of Avila that helps me: Let nothing upset you. Let nothing startle you. All things pass; God does not change. Patience wins all it seeks. Whoever has God lacks nothing: God alone is enough.

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    1. Oh I love that and I read it right before going into my doctor's appointment yesterday! Thanks for sharing that!

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  2. Great post, Jessica! I'm embarrassed to say "disquieting thoughts" plague me quite often, lol, and one verse I keep returning to in those moments is Zephaniah 3:17 - "For the LORD your God is living among you. He is a mighty savior. He will take delight in you with gladness. With his love, he will calm all your fears. He will rejoice over you with joyful songs."

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    1. I think we all suffer from disquieting thoughts, Gwen! You're just brave enough to admit it! :) So love this verse. I'm letting it sink in this morning.

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  3. My one word for this year is PEACE. And I've relied on God's gracious peace so many times this year. His comfort is always there, no matter how chaotic my life is.

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  4. I've had a massive influx of "disquieting thoughts" lately. I realize that I have an amazingly wonderful life full of wonderful people and things and opportunities...but I've had a hard few months internally. Makes me so thankful for posts like this, that point me back to truth. Seriously, thank you! A verse that has soothed me lately is that one from Isaiah, I think, that says in quietness and trust is your strength.

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  5. Jessica, what a beautiful post! I love that passage in Psalm 94 also. In 2006, a scan discovered a tumor on my right ovary. They couldn't define what kind of tumor though. Long story short, docs went in via laparoscopy to remove it. I was so scared it might be cancer, and having surgery with two little guys at home . . . I was overcome.

    Then one morning, I read Psalm 84:5-7. I loved this passage because it spoke such hope to my heart. It reminded me that we pass THROUGH the valley of Baca (Sorrow). I took from it a sense that God would bring beauty and hope though the rains that came after it, turning the valley into a spring. And God covers it in blessings. Those who walk with Jesus (my words) go from strength to strength.

    I've always remembered this passage when hard times come. We walk THROUGH the sorrows, and leave springs in the valleys. It only happens as we walk with Jesus.

    Okay, I've written a novella here. I loved this post today.

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