if it is not of faith...

A State Police car pulled up to our house tonight.

The kids were all excited.

Two sharply dressed troopers came to the door.

"Ma'am, I'm sorry, but we have some bad news..."

Moments felt like minutes
It seemed my heart stopped
and then began to pound
I felt almost faint

What could this mean?
It was late.
My husband wasn't home.
Had something happened?

It was bad news,
but nothing as urgent as I had begun to braced myself for.

Now that my children are safe in bed and the house is quiet, I am filled with thankfulness, not fear. I consider how different this night would be if those officers had delivered more disturbing news... news that certainly countless others have received. My heart aches and is filled with new compassion for those who have had that experience.

And as I reflect back on the evening, I realize that thankfulness has changed my life.

The habit of counting blessings, even in times when it is hard to be thankful, has transformed my way of thinking. This is evidence that applying scripture works!

"In everything give thanks."
"Be transformed by the renewing of your mind"
(Better understood after reading Ann Voskamp's One Thousand Gifts)

I see a miracle in me.

Rather than being gripped by the "what-ifs" of fear tonight,
I found myself habitually counting His gifts.

His partner handed me a sheet of paper and began to tell me about a serious issue for our neighborhood. I gathered my children to explain. We circled up as we do every night and prayed.

Eldest son, the man of the house for the evening, prayed first...

His prayers baffled me... such maturity, such wisdom, compassion, insight... all words I would not have thought to pray.

I have a quiet spirit tonight.

We are safe.
He watches over us.
He never sleeps; He never slumbers.
He hems us in behind and before.
He has placed His hand upon us.
Such knowledge is too wonderful!
...too lofty for me to completely understand!

under His wing,
the apple of His eye,
His treasure,
His child

He is our refuge
our fortress
our shield

His gives His angels charge over us
to guard
to keep
to protect

aaah, scripture hidden away in our heart and prayed

We are loved. We are known.
We are under His care.

Thank you, Lord, for Your perfect love that casts out fear.

Later this evening, in a totally different context, I heard myself say,
"If it is not of faith, it has no place in this home."
It rang in my ears.

"If it is not of FAITH, it has NO PLACE in this home!"


I will trust in the Lord at all times!
His praise shall continually be in our mouths and on our lips.

The old song is true,
"He's got the whole world in His hands."
He has me,
my husband,
my children,
my home,
and yours...
He has you. You are His, and you are safe.
Whatever worries you tonight, trust Him with it.

Blessings to you and your home tonight.
Sleep well. Sleep safe and secure in His arms.

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