Psalm 16:7-9 NLT
'I will bless the Lord who guides me; even at night my heart instructs me. I know the Lord is always with me. I will not be shaken, for he is right beside me. No wonder my heart is glad, and I rejoice. My body rests in safety.'
Unlike the psalmist, I cannot with authentically claim that “I will not be shaken”. At times, I really struggle with the challenges life brings. Clinging to God, I acknowledge God is “right beside me”, even if I cannot always sense that presence. This is the nature of faith; something unseen, yet factual and reliable. So, I place my confidence in this unseen truth ahead of my perceptions and their many attendant anxieties. For every crisis I survive, and there have been so many, while I give thanks and even formulate a testimony of gratitude, I know further tests lie around some future corner.
The ultimate reality of blessing lies in the fact that I can live at rest with myself, my circumstances and my future. So, I am invited, and consistently instructed by the Holy Spirit, to place my complete confidence in God. The fruit from such confidence is that elusive peace “the world cannot give” (John 14:27). This fruit takes some work. I can see that reality in my garden where, last autumn, the established fruit trees were laden for harvest. Yet, those I have planted since moving into the Oratory as yet only bear a minimal crop. I have to settle into the soil of blessing to fully harvest its riches – a truth that has taken time to be learned.
On Day 57, I described a tremendous experience when I woke enfolded in a deep sense of well-being. I was indeed blessed and my thoughts and emotions were touched with a positivity that I do not easily experience. I am normally actively practising a positive approach, but that morning I simply soaked within what felt like a hot and fragrant bath. So, my learning continues to be to bless God, no matter how dark the night that surrounds me.
QUESTION: Are you learning to draw comfort from the knowledge that God is beside you always?
PRAYER: Thank you for the blessing and promise of the gift of your Holy Spirit abiding with all who believe in Christ.