Times of Trouble

Being driven by car used to be a normal everyday experience for me until seven weeks ago. Since then my husband has only used the car once a week to go to the supermarket and I have only left the house to take a walk around the neighbourhood each day. So it was a grand adventure to go to the hospital for my routine X-ray check up and take a look at the deserted streets of York along the way.

Unusually, the area outside the hospital was free of people and there was no need to use the multi-storey car park. Paul waited in the car as I walked into the main reception.

Men in high visibility jackets were on duty and one came to check I had an appointment, helpfully directing me to the X-ray department. As I walked down the corridors, empty of visitors, I felt a rising surge of anxiety within me and spoke the words I had read that morning in Psalm 59 over and over again to myself, “You are my fortress and my refuge in times of trouble”.

What a relief that I was only in the building for ten minutes! But it was not to be the end of my battle with anxiety that morning. Paul drove to the supermarket and I sat safely in the car while he went to hunt for a bag of flour. As soon as he walked away, I realised that the car had automatically locked me inside and I had no way of opening a window or door from the inside.

A rising tide of anxiety attacked me yet again as I felt the warm sunshine streaming through the window on to my face. How silly I was to not bring my keys or to ask for his! I spoke words of reason and faith to myself as I watched him in the small queue and timed how long it took for his return. “It is not exactly a time of trouble, but still You will keep me safe and I have to trust You and rest in Your peace, despite the circumstances which are beyond my control”.

It was ten minutes before Paul returned triumphantly with a bag of flour in hand.

Prayer: Dear heavenly Father, thank You that You are my fortress and my refuge in times of trouble. Please help me to trust You for all situations, big or small, which feel frightening. Help me to really rest in Your peace, knowing that Your loving arms are all around me. In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.

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But I will sing of your strength, in the morning I will sing of your love; for you are my fortress, my refuge in times of trouble. You are my strength, I sing praise to you; you, God, are my fortress, my God on whom I can rely.
Psalms‬ 59:16-17‬, NIVUK


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Today's Writer

Liz Griffin lived for 20 years as an expatriate in South Africa, Bahrain and Japan, as her husband Paul worked for an international oil company. Paul and Liz became involved with Ellel Ministries in 1991 as part of the ministry team and joined the full-time team at Ellel Grange in 1995. Paul and Liz teach and minister to those seeking healing in their lives and together have written two books, 'Anger - How Do You Handle It' and 'Hope and Healing For The Abused'.

Liz Griffin

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