And isn’t it just like God’s wisdom
To put grace where He plans to lead
Today I needed grace to find me
And Your words were there to meet my need
–De Garmo & Key, “Never Look Back”
A couple of years ago, I was on my daily run, thinking about nothing in particular other than getting through the misery that is the “sandwich miles” – where you’re too far in to turn around, but not yet close enough to see the finish line – when these lyrics jumped into my brain and woke me up a bit and became my cadence. I was leading a Bible study and wanted to remember that line to share with the other ladies in the group. It was deep, it was profound, it was relevant to what we were studying.
And just the other day, I discovered it’s also true.
This summer, I’ve been thrust rather suddenly into a difficult family situation. A situation with no easy answers and long-term implications. A situation that threatens to disrupt my “normal” and turn my whole world upside down. A situation that has no clear timetable, no defined timeline, and no happy ending. A situation of roller-coaster emotions and perpetual anxiety- and stress-inducing responsibilities. A situation I never wanted, but knew was inevitable.
And at that moment when I realized “this is it”…there was peace. In that instant where fear and chaos swirled around…I had calm. In that place where confusion reigned and I felt the sucker-punch of reality hurling toward me and all I could do was brace for impact…I had strength. Strength to resist the urge to fall apart. Strength to meet the need with grace and kindness and tenderness. Strength to think clearly and act courageously and take charge.
Because God’s grace was there, waiting for me. God knew, in His infinite wisdom, that this moment would come. He knew the journey He had laid out for me. He knew how difficult it would be, how hard the climb, how wearying the load. So He placed His provision – in the form of peace, calm, and strength, wrapped in His grace – right where it would be required. The exact amounts, perfectly proportioned to the depth of my need.
In that moment where I needed to grieve…God provided a friend to meet me at the coffee shop and held me as I cried…even when it got ugly.
In that moment where I needed to find joy…God provided friends to make me laugh until my sides hurt…and then laugh some more.
In that moment where I needed to find direction…God provided wise counsel from other family members both biological and spiritual to keep me focused and alert.
In that moment where I needed rest…God provided a husband who willingly washed the dishes without being asked and held off doing that household project so I could sleep just a few minutes longer.
In that moment when I didn’t even know what I needed…God provided wisdom. Compassion. Time. Resources. Mercy. Confidence. Faith.
Though my path may be uncertain, I can be sure of this: whatever I will face tomorrow – or the day after that, or the day after that, or all the days to follow – there will be a gift waiting for me. It will be a wonderful gift, the perfect gift, just the right size, shape and color. It’ll be “just what I always wanted” and certainly what I will need. And it will be beautifully wrapped in His incredible, unending, amazing grace.