Sitting in a session at a writing and speaking conference, my phone buzzed. I checked to see the message. My jaw dropped my eyes blurred as I read the message. “David Jauss has checked in as safe in the Munich shootings.” Our oldest son, DJ, lives in Munich, Germany while playing and coaching baseball. Why was there a shooting in Munich? Why was he near a shooting? The citizens of Germany stand on great pride that guns are not available to civilians in their country. While visiting our son last fall, we were met with confidence that Germany was safe, much safer than the US.
I immediately responded to his check-in on Facebook with, Thank God!!! My next thought, I knew my husband would see the incident on the clubhouse TV and not know DJ was safe. I gathered my things and walked toward the exit. An overwhelming feeling of despair engulfed me as I neared the double doors. What can I do? DJ doesn’t have a cell phone I can call. I can’t get to him. What do I do? When I exited the room, the emotions overtook me, and I began to sob. I had no control of the situation, and I didn’t know what to do.
Outside the door, I was met with the peaceful face of one of the leaders of the conference. She immediately offered prayer. I was too distraught to stand there and pray. I needed to text my husband. I continued to list the things I wanted to do and how I was unable to do them.
Reality hit me hard. I was not in control. As a believing Christian did I not know God is in control? He is sovereign and merciful and loves my son more than I do. God is with DJ wherever he is, even near a shooting.
“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9
Quickly I prayed for God’s peace. I took a deep breath and received the peace God offered. I sent a quick text to my husband. I had ten minutes before a publisher’s appointment, a crucial part of the conference. I cleaned up my make-up smears and stood tall knowing God was in control. My emotions were still very volatile, and my thoughts raced as I walked into the appointment. Once I explained why I was a bit frazzled, the publisher gathered my hands in hers and began to pray a prayer of peace, mercy, and protection. Again, God had placed someone in my path to remind me of His sovereignty.
Why do I go to panic and anxiety when circumstances become out of my control? Do you? Am I alone? How do we forget His love, presence, and protection so quickly?
After my appointment, I retreated to my hotel room and began to scour God’s Word for what I knew to be true. Digging deep in scripture to remind me of His abilities takes away my desire to rely on my own.
Matthew 19:26 ESV
But Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”
Isaiah 55:8-11 ESV
For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts. “For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven and do not return there but water the earth, making it bring forth and sprout, giving seed to the sower and bread to the eater, so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth; it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it.”
Matthew 6:34 “Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.
Isaiah 41:10 Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
Proverbs 16:9 The heart of man plans his way, but the Lord establishes his steps.
We may not be in control but we know the One who is. Thank you Lord with you all things are possible. Thank you that your ways are not our ways, for yours are better than anything we could ever imagine. Lord we lay our anxieties at your feet for you to carry away. We stand in your strength. Thank you Lord that you direct our steps in the right way. We are safe in You.