Yesterday I woke up exhausted – but it didn’t last long. I perked right up on the trek into work on the most treacherous road conditions of the winter so far. Not that my mind wandered too far away from the strategic mission of the moment – get in the car and drive – but some memories of the past skated through my mind. Funny that both memories were of messages I received from two friends. They were on separate occasions, one being a voicemail , received in February 1991 when we had a winter storm, and one was email after a winter storm in January 1998. How do I remember them? Because I saved them in my heart and in my mind. What we put in our minds stays there. The email I kept in my day planner, and still have it. In fact, this is what it says: Subject line: Encouraging you!! Happy winter, did you have safety in travel to work? I hope so. A promise from the Lord for you today … Joshua 1 “As I was with Moses … I am with you … “Be strong and courageous! Be not dismayed … God is with you wherever you go … and in whatever you have need of today.” At 30 miles per hour on roads where the white lines are indistinguishable from packed snow, I needed to know God was with me, taking care of whatever I needed – for that moment.
I recalled the memory of dragging into work on a stormy winter morning, then greeted by a voicemail from a friend at work who said, “Call me when you get in. I want to know you’re OK. I prayed Psalm 91 over you this morning. I prayed that God would put angels around your car.” What? Did I hear that right? What was she talking about? I had to go look it up. Here’s what I found Psalms 91:11-12 “He ordered his angels to guard you wherever you go. If you stumble, they’ll catch you; their job is to keep you from falling.” Because I know I had read every chapter Psalms many times over the years, I was certain Psalm 91 would have been in my readings at least a few times. Guess what – I had never thought of angels actually guarding my car.
Since those days, I have prayed Psalms 91 often, mostly for others, but also for myself. You can pray it too, even when you’re driving on solid ground. You don’t have to wait till you’re skating on a road made for wheels that go around; not blades that run on ice. All the way into work the radio announced new accidents every few minutes. Cars rolled into fields, 3 car pile-ups, ditch parties, cars out of control, fire and rescue on the scene. Where there’s an accident, when a rescue takes place, at the sound of a siren, the first thought through my mind is “Someone’s life is about to change.” Humanly speaking we can do nothing to rewrite this moment, but we can pray. 2 Thessalonians 3:3 tell us “But the Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen you and protect you .” Sometimes there is no opportunity to do anything other than pray and how many times do the accidents and exasperating circumstances occur in the dark of night. Life is tough, pray hard, my friends. Psalms 130:5-6 “I pray to God—my life a prayer— and wait for what he’ll say and do. My life’s on the line before God, my Lord, waiting and watching till morning, waiting and watching till morning.” Recently, I decided to read some obscure books in the Old Testament that I hadn’t really paid attention to before. I found this in the Message translation of Lamentations 3:22-24 “God’s loyal love couldn’t have run out, his merciful love couldn’t have dried up. They’re created new every morning. How great is your faithfulness! I’m sticking with God (I say it over and over). He’s all I’ve got left.” I’ve come to the conclusion that on good days, I need God and on bad days, I need God. In fact, I’m glad God is on call 24/7 forever. Hebrews 10:22-24 “ Let us draw near to God with a sincere heart and with the full assurance that faith brings. Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds.”
What is your greatest need today?