Note: This is an excerpt from the book The Emotional Devotional: Following Jesus in Every Emotion coming soon from Next Step Press. This book, written by teenage girls, for teenage girls, is meant to help you bring your emotions to Jesus just as they are. If you would like to receive an email when The Emotional Devotional is available, please join the Next Step Press email list.
By: Naomi Rossow
A feeling of calm washes over you and relaxes your body when you feel safe, in a place or with a person. When I experience security, my breathing is slower, and I feel in no hurry to move from place to place. I often find that a small smile rests on my face without force. My shoulders relax down and my arms swing freely.
It is God who arms me with strength and keeps my way secure.
2 Samuel 22:33, NIV
Your Happy Place
Okay, let’s start with a short activity to get you in the mood. I want you to imagine yourself in your perfectly peaceful happy place. If you don’t know what that is for you, feel free to use mine: I am sitting on the back of the boat with my feet splashing in the cool water of the lake. The sun is starting to set, throwing beautiful shades of pink and orange across the water. I have a light blanket wrapped across my shoulders, and I am in my bathing suit. My boyfriend is sitting next to me with his feet in the water next to mine. His arm is wrapped around my back, and my head is on his shoulder. We sit there happily enjoying the water, each other’s presence, and the beautiful sunset.
Wow. How peaceful we can come to be in small moments with the people we love the most. It’s amazing. Take a deep breath, and enjoy the moment. This sense of security and peacefulness is a blessing. There are so many things in our life that cause stress and panic. Each day we face questions, but we also receive times of peace. Like in my example, these moments can be shared with someone we love, or they can be experienced alone.
Peacefulness comes when we are feeling happy about something. A new job or a new friendship has your heart light, and in those light moments you feel secure. But, I think even more powerful are the moments of security in a storm of chaos. I can remember some key times I have felt secure where I was, even in days of panic: just a simple moment where the fresh air gives me the space to breathe finally; or my mother’s comforting hand allows me to regain a sense of belonging and security that had been taken away. Even moments after my siblings woke me up before I wanted to be up, and it resulted in a calm morning of writing.
In the midst of panic, God gives us moments of security. And we breathe.
Just like you invite Jesus into the negative emotions that we experience, try bringing Jesus into these moments of peacefulness or security. Whether the sunset or sparkling water gives you a moment of peace, recognize the Giver of the gift. Invite Jesus to share it with you. He loves sunsets and sunrises, and He’s always glad to spend some time with you.
People Like Me
In 2 Samuel 22, David praises the Lord through his distress. He accounts how he called upon the Lord and stayed faithful in times of trial. He reminds us that we are guided by the Lord.
David suffered through capture. He faced panic. He faced fear. He faced distress. He faced hopelessness. He faced all these things which we experience in our lives. He did it in the name of the Lord, just as we do. And he also experienced security. He experienced peace.
David reveled in the peace of the Lord, secure in the love of his Father.
When you feel secure, you are not alone.
As always, feel free to change or add to this prayer. It is meant as a guide to help you express what you are feeling to God, but there is not a “standard” way to experience emotions.
Thank you, God. You are truly wonderful. You give us blessings in the midst of chaos and you give us times of peace to breathe when life feels like it might fall apart. I am amazed by the security your love gives me.
Thank you, Lord.