“My suffering was good for me, for it taught me to pay attention to your decrees. Your instructions are more valuable to me than millions in gold and silver. You made me; you created me. Now give me the sense to follow your commands. May all who fear you find in me a cause for joy, for I have put my hope in your word. I know O LORD, that your regulations are fair; you disciplined me because I needed it. Now let your unfailing love comfort me, just as you promised me, your servant.” Psalm 119:71-76

Recently I was doing a common household chore when I felt pain in my right upper arm. Intense pain told me I had either pulled or strained a muscle. My dominant arm was so weak I could barely lift it, and that not without increased discomfort. The only position of comfort was to hold it close to my chest. I sent out a prayer request, and prayed while I popped a Tylenol, lay down and positioned an ice pack on my arm.

Why did this happen, Lord? And the verse came to mind. Your suffering caught your attention. Here I was, comfortable only when my right arm was tight to my chest. It reminded me that Jesus holds us close to his heart.

“He will feed his flock like a shepherd. He will carry the lambs in his arms, holding them close to his heart. He will gently lead the mother sheep with their young.” Isaiah 40:11

When we are in difficult circumstances the best place to be is close to Jesus, so close we can hear his heart beat in every word. I love you.* I am your rock and shield.* No weapon formed against you will prosper.* Do not fear.* Let my peace fill you.* Be patient.* Think on what is true, right, pure, worthy of praise.* In everything give thanks, for this is my will.* I will never leave or forsake you.* I didn’t come to condemn you, but to save you.* Nothing can separate you from my love.* I will feed you, I will carry you close to my heart.*

Abba Father, thank you for who you are and all you do to teach us to know you more. We love you. Thank you, Jesus, for being the Way. Keep us close to your heart. Lead us, and let your unfailing love comfort us, just as you have promised.

by Marilyn Allison

Scripture Heart Beats:

Jeremiah 31:3; John 3:16
2 Samuel 22:3
Isaiah 54:17
2 Timothy 1:7
Philippians 4:7; Colossians 3:15
James 5:7
I Thessalonians 5:18
Hebrews 13:5
John 3:17
Romans 8:39
Isaiah 40:11