Photo and Commentary ©2020 by Shelley Schurch
Sunday, September 20, 2020
This was not my favorite week. Parts of it were challenging, and one part really bothered me. I thought about it a lot; a more accurate description would be that I stewed about it. The fact that I couldn’t see how to improve the situation made me fret about it even more.
One of my favorite ways of dealing with stressful situations is to get out of the house and take a walk, especially on our neighborhood trail which is close by. To be out where God’s creations are green and growing, and you can hear the birds and breathe the fresh air – that’s good.
However, due to the wildfire smoke and exceedingly poor air quality, getting out and breathing the air was not a healthy option. All week I was smoke-bound and stewing.
Then Thursday night I turned the corner. The Lord surprised me with the opportunity to talk with two coworkers I hadn’t had the chance to visit with for a long time, since I’ve been working from home for six months (and very grateful to be employed). Our conversation lifted my spirits and I went to sleep that night in a much better mood.
When I woke the next morning, though, before I even opened my eyes, I started rehearsing and replaying my unhappiness from the week. Ruminating, like a cow chewing her cud over and over.
Suddenly I “heard” the Lord speak to me. I put the word “heard” in quotation marks because I didn’t hear an audible voice speak loudly in my bedroom. Perhaps you know what I mean because you’ve experienced this, too, at times. I believe that it was an inner impression from the Holy Spirit, speaking clearly and directly to my need.
I’ve learned that the Holy Spirit doesn’t use flowery language, full of extra words. He got right to the point with three small words: “Turn the page.”
He could have shouted, “Cut that out!” — three small words that are also clear and direct. But His message was kind as well as clear: “Turn the page.”
As I started my day with prayer, I told the Lord I was grateful for His words, thankful that He stopped me in my tracks of going down a useless, harmful road with my thinking. I also told Him I would need His help to turn the page.
This was Friday morning, a day filled with anticipation of Sabbath coming, a day to get ready for the blessings it would bring. At sundown I turned another page, the Sabbath page. Exhale the week, inhale the Sabbath! Truly fresh air for our souls!
We all look forward to the day when we can turn the pandemic page, when we can relax not only our restrictions, but our shoulders. But the best page turn of all will come when God turns the page on this world’s history, when He comes again, when He says it is time to write the final words: No more tears, no more death, no more sorrow, no more crying, no more pain.
I know this is more than wishful thinking. I know it is true because I read it in the pages of my Bible, His Word, in Revelation 21, where God joyfully promises all those “no more’s.” Then He says, “Behold, I make all things new.” And just in case we doubt, in case it all sounds too good to be true, He adds, “ . . . these words are true and faithful.”
As we turn the page to a new week, if you’re feeling weary or worried, look to Jesus and ask for His help. Ask Him to turn any necessary page for you, and He will. He is true and faithful.