Where do I go when my world just crashed in upon me? Who can help me? Confusion, doubt, fear, dismay, depression all crowd in upon me. How can I escape? The cause of this terrible state varies from person to person, whether loss of a loved one, loss of a job, loss of health or loss of confidence in a trusted one or yourself. The joy of life disappeared; only stress remains.
At such times, I must ask myself: How much do I care where I am? Do I care enough to use all my energy to push myself out of this place? Do I even have that much energy? How long will I be content to wallow in not only self-pity but helplessness? Do I have the courage and strength to seek a means of escape?
Perhaps I’m not sitting as a recluse from the world; perhaps I’m doing the normal things of life that must be done. But I’ve lost interest in them. My heart hides behind a closed door.
I can choose escapism though many means – denial, alcoholism or less harmful devices. When I really want to escape, I watch HGTV or Hallmark movies. Yes, the shows vary little from each other, but they’re lighthearted and take my mind off whatever I’m trying to avoid.
However, I know a far better escape. If someone doesn’t know Jesus as their Savior, they may think my hiding place sounds like a cliché but I can find help, comfort and hope in this special environment. A child of God Almighty can run to Daddy-God and find soul-rest in His strong arms. I find a quiet place and play some calming worshipful music. I imagine myself as a small child when I’d bump my knee or have some other problem. I run to my daddy and crawl up in his lap. He’d wrap his strong arms of love around me, and I felt safe and secure. Somehow the pain of the bump disappeared in those arms.
In the same way, when I need a secure place of retreat from whatever disturbs me, I run to my Daddy-God – because He loves us better than any earthly father – and feel His strong arms of love wrapped snugly around me. My Father gives me not only a place of escape, He provides comfort, hope and strength to fight whatever battle I’m facing. He gives me confidence that I can be victorious over my circumstance because He works in it. God Almighty loves me enough to send helpers I need, whether it’s a word of encouragement or physical help.
When I escape to this secure rest, I find peace, not simply escapism like with watching TV. Rather, I find confidence for the future as well as the answers to questions I must face. My emotions calm and I begin to think about possibilities instead of the negatives of my situation. I feel a resurgence of energy and strength. I begin to look ahead and am unstuck from my present circumstances. My Daddy-God does all this when I rest in His strong arms of love.
- Terry MacAlmon’s song In My Father’s Arms inspired this devotional.