My Lenten readings today have been directed by the search for assurance. My soul tends to be an anxious one, and when I am facing a deadline or anticipating an event with an unknown but possibly significant outcome, well… I have to work extra hard at obeying the admonition in 1 Peter 5:7, to “Cast all your anxieties on him, for he cares for you.”
My anxieties of late have centered around the future of our precious and adorable foster boy. It has always, from the first moment we said “yes” to the call to care for him, been something I knew I must be willing to hold lightly, even while pouring myself out in love for this sweet child, whom we have known since birth (and before!). I knew from the get go that he is not ours, any more than our other children are “ours” – each moment we have with them is a gift from the Father of us all, who loves them, and us, more than we can fathom.
Knowing that “as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts” (Isaiah 55:9) we have sought to conform our prayers to His will. In Jeremiah 29:11 we are assured, “For I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.” and it has been our fervent prayer that our Father would love, care for, and protect Junior all of his days, no matter where that perfect plan may take him.
As I read, and type these verses out, I am reminding myself of the faithful promises on which I can safely rest. Neither worrying, nor wondering, nor anxious thoughts, will change the course of action to be decided by the state in the coming days, weeks, and months. Yet one more assurance I have: Proverbs 21:1 – “The king’s heart is a stream of water in the hand of the Lord; he turns it wherever he will.” Oh Father, Thy will be done.
My Lord is gracious, and provides just what I in my weakness need – abundant assurance of His love and care, so that I can truly sing,
The peace of Christ makes fresh my heart,
A fountain ever springing;
All things are mine since I am his—
How can I keep from singing?