Trust in the Lord forever, for in YAH, the Lord, is everlasting strength.
Isaiah 26:4 NKJV
This verse caught my eye yesterday, I think on BibleGateway.com, and the Holy Spirit really used it to expand my very limited perception of what it means to trust the Lord. What struck me most was the word ‘for’ and its context. When I read it, it sounded like this, “Trust in the Lord forever. Why? For in YAH, the Lord, is everlasting strength.” His strength simply cannot and will not fail—it’s everlasting.
By itself, this verse feels like a promise, a reassurance that God is ever able. But the Holy Spirit brought this verse to bear on my life specifically, and it was less a reassurance and more an imperative. It hit my heart with at least ten exclamation points and a Mr. Miyagi nose-honk. And since I was having a particularly hard time living in the moment, I badly needed that nose-honk.
What do I mean by struggling to live in the moment? I mean that I didn’t really like how I felt or where I was, and I just frankly wanted to leave the moment and jump to the future where it was solved. See, sometimes I can feel something moving in the deep recesses of my heart, stirring and shifting, and slowly making its way to the surface. I can feel it, but I can’t name it yet. I don’t know what this “thing” is, and it’s not always quick to be seen – but it’s making its presence known nonetheless. I really hate this. I would rather be in the throes of Cross-driven agony than waiting out the slow migration of my latest obstacle to holiness. To Him. I just want to know what it is already so I can deal with it!
And there’s the rub. My pride, my demand to know, loathes the unknown and is tormented by the waiting. I’ve made God many pleas and arguments over the years, from “Surely You want this taken care of so as to limit the shame I bring to you! I mean, gah! People can see me!” to “How can I possibly be a useful vessel with this hanging over my whole life?” God is not moved, unsurprisingly, by either my pride or its innate discomfort with His timeline. And at the end of the day, He has no interest in co-parenting me with me. It’s quite upsetting.
So when I read Isaiah 26:4, it was a reminder of who the Lord is (YAH) and at least one thing that He brings to the table that is trustworthy (everlasting strength). Nothing He does is without purpose, whether I see it or not. He’s the Parent, not me. When He wants to deal with something in me on an accelerated timetable, He does. And I never question that speed. It would never occur to me to do so! But when things are drawn out and uncertainty hangs over my head, I tend to flip out. It never occurs to me to receive that particular timetable just as unblinkingly.
I needed a word, and He gave me a little one that had a big impact on my heart. The Father works on many levels, and this is a great example. This one verse was a promise, a correction, a reminder, and somehow, permission. I need permission to BE – to be a mess, to be okay, to be ignorant, to be wise, to be dumb, to be at peace, just TO BE. That’s part of my story, and even when I forget it, He doesn’t. He knows every contour of my heart, and yours. That’s who He is. He is my YAH and I will trust Him.