I've been thinking about this and how at different seasons or stages of life, different verses have resonated with my heart. As a child I struggled with sleepless nights. My precious father wrote this verse on a card, put it in a recycled calendar cardboard frame and set it on my bedside table: Proverbs 3:24 "When you lie down, you will not be afraid; when you lie down, your sleep will be sweet. "I remember seeing those words in my Daddy's handwriting and feeling the comfort they brought to my young heart.
Then of course there is Philippians 4:13 "I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me." That verse helped me make it through high school. College exam time? Philippians 4:6 "Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God." Pregnancy? Psalm 138:8 "The Lord will perfect that which concerns me; Your mercy and loving-kindness, O Lord, endure forever--forsake not the works of Your own hands." I can look back at my life and remember situations I faced verse by verse.
Later in the journey Isaiah 43:2 kept me from staying stuck in a difficult situation. "When you pass through the waters, I will be with you, and through the rivers, they will not overwhelm you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned or scorched, nor will the flame kindle upon you." The Lord so tenderly spoke through this passage....Just Keep Walkin' Baby. Another verse I've landed on lately Psalm 62 "One thing God has spoken, two things have I heard: that you, O God, are strong, and that you, O Lord, are loving." Strong AND Loving! It's a great combination.
I was talking to a dear friend who is a few decades older than me and she shared a favorite verse Romans 8:28 "And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. " In All Things...the good the bad the ugly. The happy the sad the painful. God works. Things don't always work out for good. I can't always finagle stuff out for my good. But somehow God is able to do this work. I've seen him do this in my life and countless others - bring good out of some crazy mess.
There is an interesting trend as I look over my life. Those early verses are really all about me. I need rest, I need peace. Thank God he speaks to those needs. But as life experiences happen or perhaps as I grow I seem to land more often on those passages that exalt Him above my needs. His work not my performance. His amazing ability to take whatever life throws my way and bring about something good.
Psalm 27:13 Yet I am confident I will see the Lord’s goodness
while I am here in the land of the living.