That’s right. Because I, your God, have a firm grip on you
and I’m not letting go.
I’m telling you, ‘Don’t panic. I’m right here to help you.’
Isaiah 41:13 (The Message)
Just a few days ago, while vacationing at my very favorite place with some of my very favorite people, my infant niece sat grinning at me from her father’s arms. She had been a good sport at the beach that day, sleeping contentedly in spite of the sun’s intense rays.
Her family was packing up to leave the sandy lakeside and head back to their cabin. My brother balanced her in one arm as he slid his other arm through the beach chair’s strap, then reversed the process for the other strap, his baby daughter not minding the jostling one bit.
Her aunt minded, though. As I watched this take place from my own beach chair just a few feet away, my stomach flipped more than once. I knew he was strong. I knew he was capable. I knew he loved her. But still, in that moment of helpless observation, I was afraid he was going to drop her.
But the whole time my stomach was doing somersaults, my brother’s happy smile never wavered. He didn’t doubt his ability to hold on to her.
His daughter didn’t doubt it either. She kept grinning with abandon in the way only babies can without looking goofy. There was not a split second of anxiety…or uncertainty…or fear.
Have you ever been an onlooker as someone you love is being jostled by life’s storms? I have. And I still am.
And although I have had some tough days and weeks and months of my own over the past couple of years, I sometimes think it’s even harder to watch another person experiencing trials. Especially when it’s someone I love.
Sometimes I feel just like I did that day on the beach with my brother and my niece. I start to wonder oh-so-subtly whether God really knows what He’s doing, and what will happen if He loses His grip.
But guess what?
The same God who carries me through the storms of life can be trusted to carry those I love.
And when I remind myself of this truth, I’m better able to come alongside them and hug them and weep with them and rejoice with them and listen to them and pray for them.
Me, the helpless one, lifting them up to the One who can help (Hebrews 13:6).
And trusting them to His secure grasp.
Written by Jennifer Clarke