The most amazing, life-changing, and happiest day happened to Jessica and me nearly 4 months ago. Our beloved baby boy was born at 12:50 AM on February 9, 2014. He was quite a large one, sized in at 9 pounds 7 ounces and 22 inches long. After about an hour of us melting in love and awe with this new little life before us, we asked the family, friends, and nurse in the room to give us some privacy to get acquainted with him privately. Oh, how our lives were transformed in an instant! It was in that next hour that we knew for sure his name was David Justus.
Many people attest to the idea that there is something about having a baby that helps us learn the Father-heart of God on a much deeper level. I am in full agreement!
On that first week of parenthood, Jessica was working diligently to help David learn how to latch onto her breast so she could feed him. It takes newborns a little practice before it becomes fully natural. Usually, he was a pro from the get-go; but there were a few occasions when he got anxious about it and couldn’t latch on.
One night, I awoke to him screaming uncontrollably while Jessica was patiently and tenderly trying to help him connect to the breast. But he had already gotten so frustrated that it just made things grow progressively worse. The more anxious he got, the harder it was for him to focus and feed. The harder it was for him to latch, the more anxious he got. It was a revolving cycle that fed his frustration and led him nowhere.
In that moment, God spoke to me and said, “Jesse, this is the way My children often are. Everything they are striving so hard to receive from Me is already set before them. Jessica has everything David needs and has already provided it for him. The answer is in his face, but his anxiety has blinded him. I have done the same. I have everything My children need and have made it readily available. But they often spend so much time and focus striving in fear and miss it. They believe working harder will bring the answer. All the child needs to do is rest and receive, and all his needs are covered.”
Faith is not the ability to muscle God into giving you what you need as if you have to convince Him that its a good idea. Faith is the ability to rest in His strong, gentle arms, trusting that He has got you covered all by Himself. The good idea was His idea. His name is El Shaddai, which strangely enough, when studied out, actually means “the Many-Breasted One.” Although that is an odd way to think of God, what it actually means is He is more than enough to lavishly provide for all of our needs.
This gives us an idea of how God wants us to receive His provision. Not by fear or toil, but by an intimate connection with our Father… well in this case, He may actually be acting more as a Mother. (In God, there is neither male nor female- Galatians 3:28). But it all comes down to an intimate connection. It happens through trust and rest. We need to believe that God has made everything of His kingdom available to His children. Jesus has already paid for and provided it all on the cross and said “It is finished.” From a very close proximity, He is handing to us at this moment whatever it is we need.
If anything has put you into an anxious mess and has got you striving to get your own need met, I would like to encourage you to try a different method. Try the following:
- Take your eyes off the problem and set them on the solution, which is always God.“Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth,” (Colossians 3:2).
- Place the issue at hand into the Lord’s hand, for He is trustworthy. “Cast all your anxiety on Him because he cares for you,” (1 Peter 5:7).
- Let the Prince of Peace minister rest to your heart and mind, for He rules and reigns in peace. “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus,” (Philippians 4:6-7).
Once all is released into His hands, we can rest assured that Papa has got us covered.