Friday, October 28, 2011

Psalm 91

I couldn't sleep last night. I've been struggling with some anxiety since the near-miss last week. Anxiety has really never been an issue for me before, and I hate it. I'm finding it hard to drive in traffic, which is unavoidable with the high level of road construction in our area right now. Tom has his work truck this week and we had to go pick up his car from the parking lot at work last night. On the way home I found myself clenching the steering wheel, feeling very afraid. Traffic was really heavy, it was dark, it was raining. It was like the emotional trifecta for me, ughh. Laying in bed later, I kept thinking of how ridiculous this fear was, but I couldn't shake it.

I got out of bed and went to get a book from my office, figuring I would read for a bit and try to settle my mind. I noticed the Shorthand books on the shelf. They belonged to my Gram, and I took them when we emptied her house before she went in the nursing home. I thought it would be fun to have them and maybe pick up a few ideas. I had never actually opened them past the first few pages, so I had no idea that they were workbooks, or that she had written in them.
There was something very comforting about seeing her handwriting in that watery blue ink. I looked at the date, and realized that she took this class two years after my grandfather died at the age of 43. She wasn't much older than me. I flipped through all three books and found that she had not only completed them, but tucked in the pages was an envelope containing her certificate of completion. I know Gram worked at a flower shop, but I never knew that she did this, or even how she went on to use it. I'll have to ask my Mom. It's just funny how God would show me these books now, when I am anxious about many things, one of which is the decision to go back to work after a decade at home. I felt so comforted knowing that my decision isn't based on what hers was. I was reminded of what it was like for her, and how hard it must have been.

I put the books back on the shelf, and noticed a tattered bible next to them. It's one that was given to their church in honor of my grandfather, and has his name in the front. Old books are like a blankey for me; I love to hold them and smell them. (The church later closed, and they got this copy.) I took it back to bed with me, and opened to Psalm 91, my favorite. The bible wasn't labeled but I knew immediately that it was the King James. I hardly ever read in that version, but for some reason the old beauty of those words moved me like I had never read this passage before. 

He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the LORD, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust. Surely he shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler, and from the noisome pestilence. He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust: his truth shall be thy shield and buckler. Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night; nor for the arrow that flieth by day; Nor for the pestilence that walketh in darkness; nor for the destruction that wasteth at noonday. A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; but it shall not come nigh thee. Only with thine eyes shalt thou behold and see the reward of the wicked. Because thou hast made the LORD, which is my refuge, even the most High, thy habitation; There shall no evil befall thee, neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling. For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways. They shall bear thee up in their hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone. Thou shalt tread upon the lion and adder: the young lion and the dragon shalt thou trample under feet. Because he hath set his love upon me, therefore will I deliver him: I will set him on high, because he hath known my name. He shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and honour him. With long life will I satisfy him, and shew him my salvation.

I cried. God is so good; He is such a comfort. He knows. He just knows. And that was what I needed.


BucksCountyFolkArt said...

Sounds like you're experiencing a wee bit of PTSD. I remember after our car accident when we were hit by a van on my side, I went through months of anxiety while driving too. I was ok when I was driving, but every time I was in the passenger seat, it felt like anybody coming out of a sidestreet was gonna plow into me. One day I noticed it wasn't bothering me anymore. I'm sure the same will happen with you. (same thing happened to my mom when she was in an accident too. It just shows how lucky we are every day that we don't get in accidents! Especially with the traffic around here).

Shay said...

Jill, I think you may be right. I've never been an anxious person so this is really foreign to me and very unsettling. I'm sure I'm annoying Tom with it because I keep clenching and snipping at him when he's driving, ugh.

KateO said...

Awesome how God shows up and gives you the peace you need. I love your Gram's books that's so cool.
I definately experianced what you're doing and the anxiety when driving. I STILL check my rear view mirrow EVERYTIME I stop at a light. (and it happened over a year ago now).