"And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, giving thanks to God the Father through Him." Colossians 3:17 (NIV)
There is a little chorus that my mother used to sing over her children at bedtime to help dispel the scary thoughts that lurked in the darkness.
"Jesus is the sweetest name I know,
And He's just the same as His lovely name.
And that's the reason why I love Him so,
For Jesus is the sweetest name I know."
The comfort of my mother's beautiful voice was enough to lull me to sleep as I entered into my dreams. My mother no longer sings me to sleep at night. But I have found that my fears in the dark can be just as real as they were when I was a child. I have had moments of terror which have woken me out of a sound sleep, gripping me so fiercely that I cannot even scream, though I want to. I will lay in the darkness, paralyzed, not even knowing how to pray.
In those moments, I have only found one word that calms the storm raging inside of me-Jesus. His name starts as a thought in my mind and soon I am able to open my closed mouth and whisper Jesus. Jesus, Jesus, Jesus. The demons tremble at the sound of that Name. Jesus, I speak clearly as the darkness recedes.
I watched a little girl today sing nervously in front of her entire student body. She was about three bars behind the music throughout the entire song, but she persevered to the end. Her bravery made me cheer inside and clap all the more when she was done. When people seem intimidating and I feel less than adequate for the situation, Jesus, Jesus, Jesus help me fills my mind. My self-consciousness and inadequacy fade into the blessed relief His Name brings to me.
This week I held my first book, Congo Vignettes, in my hands, the product of months of praying and waiting on God. The story behind the book being printed is a story in itself of the power of the Name of Jesus. As I held the final copy in my hands, Jesus, Jesus, Jesus, thank You! echoed through my soul. Only He knows all that went into my praise at that moment for allowing a childhood dream to come true.
Jesus! You are everything to me. Your Name brings me relief from my fears, strength in my weakness, and pure joy in my praises of gratitude. You belong in all my life situations. You are bigger than I can imagine, stronger than my fear, and more worthy of my praise than I can express. One day I will be able to thank You face-to-face for all Your Name has meant to me. Until then, I invite You into every facet of my life.