Allow new breath, though motherhood aches, and mind screams in the tight squeeze of despair. Each face, traced anew, is valued from womb to grave. Every sorrow felt, a precious jewel, shaped and hardened by the pressure of both good and bad experience in my heart. My children, shimmer in the palm of a God who loves.
” The steadfast of mind You will keep in perfect peace, because he trusts in You” (Isaiah 26:3 BSB).
It is now 1:51 in the morning and I have given up on sleep. So I came downstairs to meditate on scripture and pray. This as my go-to habit when I can’t sleep. The time has been sweet, refreshing my spirit, and reveals so much about myself and God.
The Lord prompted me to share with you step by step, as it is happening, what my time looks like.
Writing Utensils (Highlighter, Pen)
Read through the first time without notes
Highlighted verses that stood out to me
Wrote out thoughts or questions in margins (can be done in a journal as well)
Looked up parts I didn’t understand
Looked for context words (i.e. lots of battle terms)
Prayed for understanding throughout, for myself, and for you
prayed for rest
Perfect Peace=Perfect Trust (What I learn about God and myself in each verse)
God’s Character/My Character
Our Salvation/Strong City
Keeps in Peace/Steadfast Mind
Rock Eternal/Trust Lord Forever
Humbles Prideful/The Oppressed Win
His Judgment Teaches Righteousness/Student
Worthy of Praise/Wait, Obey, Know Him
Majesty/ Experience Evil Because of God’s Grace for All Mankind
Authority/Protected From Enemies
Establishes Peace/Open to His Good Things
Lord and Ruler/ Honor His Name No Matter Who Rules Over Me
Destroys Oppressor/Temporary Suffering
Glorified Through the Righteous/Repent and Cry Out
Disciplines the Wicked/I Suffer If I Do Not Do What is Right or Bring Salvation to Others
What does “perfect peace” mean? vs 3
What is the significance of a upraised hand? vs 11
Lest you be intimidated by the fact that I am looking up the Hebrew translation of the verses, realize this, I love languages. I am a word girl. We lose some depth of meaning through our English translation, so I try to look at the original. This is a desire God placed in me as an aspect of my delight in scripture. Reading the original aids in my understanding. By no means do you have to do this, and I would actually caution, anyone beginning to read scripture for the first time to keep it simple.
At the core, my basic reading pattern looks like this:
Indeed, the Hebrew revealed something I didn’t see before. “Perfect peace” could literally be translated “peace peace”. By doubling up, the writer is implying this is complete, without a shadow of a doubt peace. It doesn’t come from man building security on high. It comes from God fortifying our lives, protecting us day and night, and trusting him to do what is right for us.
God has been chiseling away at the hard places in me where I lean on my own understanding and don’t trust him (i.e. my daughter’s health) and revealing over and over his trustworthiness.
Going back to my list again, what developed as I read is the following:
Read–God’s actions my response (looked for in each verse)
Question– What is the significance of God’s hand being raised? (I figure a kingly gesture of judgment, like a gavel)
Apply–God is trustworthy in my family’s health. Run to him for healing and direction. He will not let me down. Rest in his faithfulness.
Blessing and and peace peace dear brothers and sisters.