Is it safe to trust God’s love? Safe enough to risk? Safe enough even to rest? It’s the question at the heart of my book, Risking Rest: A Journey to Trust God’s Love, and as I work to get it out into the world later this year, I’m having to keep living the question and the answer myself.
When a laptop dies, is it safe to trust God’s love?
When the words feel painfully vulnerable, is it safe to risk?
When deadlines loom, am I still safe enough in God’s love to keep honoring the needs of my mind and body and live a healthy rhythm of push and rest?
Safety is. . .
There are many ways God has been gently tending me this week as I live my limitations and God’s kindness. One is through Aundi Kolber’s beautiful new book, Strong Like Water. She’s one of the few people whose Instagram posts I consistently read, and, after finding her first book, Try Softer, so helpful, I’d been counting days until this new one entered the world. It hasn’t disappointed.
I’ve been sitting with these words of psychiatrist Gabor Mate that Aundi shares in Strong Like Water:
“Safety is not the absence of threat, but the presence of connection.”
Do you see the good news here?
No matter what dangers lie around us, or even within us, we who are God’s are still safe, for we are always known and loved and held. We may not always feel it, but that doesn’t make it any less true. And the path to greater felt safety isn’t fighting the perceived threats around us, but leaning more deeply into healthy connection with God, ourselves, and others.
The psalmist knew it to be true, turning again and again to God for protection and finding it not in the absence of danger but in the presence of God’s faithful love, compassion and protection.
“Even in the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me,
your rod and your staff they comfort me. . .
You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. . . .” (Psalm 23)
“The LORD is a refuge for the oppressed,
a stronghold in times of trouble.
Those who know your name trust in you,
for you, Lord, have never forsaken those who seek you.” (Psalm 9:9-10)
Rest here with me, will you, friend? Whatever you are facing today, know yourself loved, held, safe.