“The Lord is my strength and song,
And He has become my salvation;
This is my God, and I will praise Him;
My father’s God, and I will exalt Him.”
—Exodus 15:2 NASB

My childhood playground had a seriously fast merry-go-round, monkey bars, a swing set, and seesaws. All the equipment was fun, but the seesaws alone required that you trust another person. Consequently, there were times I found myself on the seesaw with a not-so-nice “friend” who would hop off without warning, leaving gravity to do its work. She always found this hilarious, but I was left bruised.

Life can be like a seesaw, can’t it? One day, you have your dream job, and the next, you’re being laid off. One year, your marriage is thriving, and the next, you find yourself in counseling. In short, most of what we do requires trust, and much of our experience fluctuates between what we label as “good” and “bad.”

How do we handle life’s ups and downs? According to God’s Word, we humbly turn to God, pour out our hearts, and offer praise and thanksgiving, regardless of the circumstances. Although I know this truth and have practiced it time and time again, I recently crashed … hard.

I would like to say, “It’s not my fault,” but that wouldn’t be accurate. I willingly climbed onto the seesaw with a not-so-nice “friend.” That crash-landing was painful, mostly because it was unexpected. I poured out my heart and praised God for never leaving me or forsaking me. Even so, I was riddled with anxiety. So, where was the disconnect? It was between my heart and my mind. I said the right words, but my heart did not trust God. My anxiety was evidence that I was projecting God to be absent, unkind, and even mean. In other words, I believed a lie.

Still, God met me there. He took my face in His hands and said, “Look at Me.” And I knew He loved me. I knew He was there. I knew He would work it all out for good. I praised Him and thanked Him again, and confessed my unbelief. It may seem strange for me to confess my sin when someone else hurt me. However, believing that God is something other than He is (calling God a liar) is sin. Only after confession was I able to focus on God’s true character traits, which worked as a healing salve.

Ruminating over painful events while believing lies about God only leads to fear and anxiety. If I trust Scripture, and I do, then all things work together for good to conform me to the likeness of Christ. And pain, like a mighty wave in a storm, has a way of eroding pretense. We are vulnerable and must choose to either run to God or run away from Him.

Fortunately, whether the pain consists of slight panic or unbearable grief, it is all under the umbrella of God’s sovereignty. Not only is He sovereign over the circumstance, but He also has a plan that is for our good—always, always, no exceptions. Scripture also tells us that the same resurrection power that raised Jesus from the dead will also work to breathe life into our situation. After all, God is our comforter, provider, healer, redeemer, counselor, and loving Father, and His goal is to make us like Jesus.

Father, forgive me for climbing onto the seesaw without Your permission and believing You to be absent and careless. Teach me to be an obedient child who always asks and listens for the answer. Thank you for always being present and loving, even when I am disobedient. Thank you for being my redeeming God! Amen.

Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and
peace in believing, that you may abound in hope
by the power of the Holy Spirit (Romans 15:13 NJKV).

Marlene McKenna



Sweet Selah Ministries

To inspire a movement away from the belief that “busy is better”
and toward the truth of God’s Word that stillness and knowing
Him matter most—and will be reflected in more effective work and service

To offer biblical resources and retreats that help women pause (Selah)
and love God more deeply as they know Him more intimately (Sweet)

If you’ve been blessed, keep the blessing going!
Click over to our Donation page … and thanks.





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