Shortly before our teenage son was sentenced to prison on May 23rd of this year, I was really struggling with the unknown. I have a history of when I feel life is out of control, my natural tendency is to be drawn away from God. It can be a struggle to keep my eyes focused on Him so I have to be purposeful in my thoughts and actions. I went to the passage in the Bible of when Jesus was tempted in the desert for 40-days found in Luke 4:1-13.
What popped out at me was every time Jesus was tempted by Satan, Jesus replied with Scripture. He’d start out every reply to the devil with “It is written”. So, I decided to do the same thing and I started a journal. On the top of my page I wrote the words, “It is Written”. Then throughout my day, when I felt tempted in thought or anything not from God, I’d open my Bible, find a verse that counteracted the temptation and write it down. I did this for all of 2 days.
A few weeks later, I was at work and felt worn out and scared from worrying about our sons’ upcoming sentencing date in May. To say the devil was messing with me is an understatement. I do home health care and my 88-year-old client is a strong Christian man. We have what is called a communication book and each aide writes a simple paragraph to let the other shifts know how his day or night went. In the basement, my client has 2 boxes full of Mead subject notebooks. The pages of the communication book were full, so I went downstairs to grab a new notebook.
He has notebooks in every color of the rainbow and for some strange reason I remember telling myself, “Grab a yellow one, it will make you happy.” On top was a blue notebook, so I flipped through the spirals until I saw a yellow cover. As I was walking up the stairs, I looked down at the notebook in my hands and stopped walking. “Whoa” was all that I could say as I stared at the notebook.
I sat at my clients dining room table for the longest time just staring at the notebook. My clients’ wife has been with Jesus for 4 years now and I wondered which one of them wrote on this particular notebook. When I showed it to my client, he remembered nothing, but told me to keep the notebook.
I wondered when God had prompted one of them to write 3 words that would hold so much power to someone they hadn’t even met yet. Three words that would be found in May 2013. Three words that would make this mom who felt helpless and out of control feel embraced by hope. I wondered why a God would go through so much trouble to let me know, I see you. I see you in Lincoln, Nebraska and I know your struggles to keep your focus and I’m letting you know, I love you. Stay in My Word. I’m worth trusting.
I didn’t even tell Gene about this right away. I just didn’t know how to wrap my mind around something so bizarre. Something that only God could do. Nobody but God knew about my attempt to keep an “It is Written” journal.
The yellow colored notebook did indeed make me happy. But happiness wasn’t all God had for me. He had hope, encouragement, love and strength waiting for me. He used that notebook to remind me that I have a God Who is so aware of my need and desire for Him that He will go to great lengths to get my attention. Even through a canary yellow Mead notebook buried in a box under blue, green and red notebooks.
I don’t know if you are enduring something heavy right now, but if you believe that Jesus is the Way, the Truth and the Life, know He has His eye on you. He sees you right where you are and wants to love you through your journey.
It is Written…