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January 28 | Psalm 1:1-6


 

DAILY READING

 

REFLECTION


Where Can I Find Security?

by Mary Alice McGinnis

I have been plagued by insecurity most of my life. Growing up, I was the awkward teenage who never really seemed to “fit in.” I did not wear the latest fashions and did not like painting my nails. I was an oddball because I tried to obey my parents. I was labeled a “goody two shoes” because of my faith. I tried desperately to get the “popular girls” to like me, or at the very least to tolerate me. I was often ignored or even humiliated by them, but this did not keep me from continuing to pursue their friendship and acceptance.


The clincher was these girls lived in my neighborhood. Every day after school we all walked home together. One day after school, I was running a little behind trying to gather up all my homework, and when I got to our meeting place, no one had waited for me. I was faced with having to walk home alone, without the security of my “friends.” About halfway home, two boys approached me. They forced me to empty my backpack, to see what valuables I might have stored there. Seeing nothing of interest, they let me go. I desperately ran the rest of the way home. Once I made it inside my front door, my body shook, and I sobbed uncontrollably. It was then that I prayed for God to help me.


A few months later, on my thirteenth birthday in April, my parents said they had news. They announced my dad was taking a new job position, and we would move over the summer. My eyes popped wide open with surprise and the tears rolled down my cheeks. My mom said, “I am so sorry sweetheart, I know this is hard.” Through my tears, I squeaked out,

“No, you don’t understand. I am just so happy!” I knew God had answered my prayers, I was going to start over.


I learned a valuable lesson. I had been trying to find security in the wrong places. I was dependent upon what other people thought of me and “fitting in” to feel accepted and loved. So I walked in the counsel of “popularity.” I stood my self-esteem up against the “mean girls” opinions of me, instead of on who Jesus said I was. And I sat down and resigned myself to allowing them to humiliate me and mock my faith.


I wish I could tell you that my insecurity and insatiable need for people to accept me was cured in that instance. Sadly, I fell prey to it repeatedly in the years to come, even well into my adult life. And some days even yet. But God was growing me. He planted me, like a little sapling, right smack dab in the middle of His stream of living water!


“Whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” (John 4:14)


When I chase after acceptance or look to the things of this world for my significance, God allows me to experience deep sorrow and disappointment. He uses these experiences in my life to see that the acceptance of others, the accolades, the praise, the success, and worldly significance I seek, are extremely fleeting. Jesus says they are just like picking up a handful of freshly plucked wheat, throwing it up in the air and watching how quickly the chaff is blown away in the wind.


God has grown deep roots in me, ones that are rooted and grounded in His deep nurturing love and care for me. He always leads me back to His river of truth.


He woos me back to the deep refreshing waters of meditating on His Word, day and night.


There He asks me to linger and reflect upon Who He Is—My LOVING God, who has good plans for me.


There He challenges me to trust who He says I am—His beloved child who will never be abandon nor forsaken.


PRAYER PRACTICE


Take a posture of standing prayer today. Plant your feet firmly and picture yourself as that tree, the one God planted in His stream of living water.


Lord, You are all I want. You are all I need. Plant me firmly in the truth of Your Word. Remind me again of Who you are and who I am in You.


Bring to mind now, Lord, a truth from Your Word today that You want to use to nurture and refresh my withering soul. Use it to produce the bountiful fruit of Your will in my life today.



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1 Comment


Judy Webb
Judy Webb
Jan 28, 2023

Once again, Mary, your words of God's love spoke to my heart. I always enjoy reading what the Lord has placed upon your spirit to share. Thank you.

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