I didn't have a clue what it was about, but that was okay. I knew the meaning would become clear as the year unfolded. What I didn't realize what that clarity would begin the next day.
I'd come to Nashville for meetings at the publishing house where I worked. Prepare echoed in my mind as soon as I woke up on Friday. It resonated through me as I drove to the office. It undergirded me when I walked into my boss's office, saw her face--and knew. The economic downturn was about to hit close to home. In fact, home was the Bull's-eye. I was laid off. In 30 years in publishing, I've never lost a job. I've changed jobs, even left publishing houses to go freelance, but never lost a job. As I absorbed this new reality, I waited for the anger, the panic to hit. It never did. Instead, one word echoed through me:
As I've gone through the following weeks, that word is always there. As is an amazing sense of peace. And I've realized something. Being prepared isn't just about me doing what I need to do. It's about God working within me. He was preparing me without my even knowing it. He breathed His word--and His peace--deep inside me. I don't know what's going to happen. Don't know what the future holds. But I know God is here, walking beside me. I feel His hand on my shoulder. In those moments when fear seeks to break through, I am enveloped in His arms. I feel His breath on my face as He whispers "Peace, be still."And that is enough.
He is enough.
He confirmed that in the most amazing way. Through a man I'd never met before. I'll tell you all about that, too.
Until then, let me leave you with this thought: Nothing that happens to us is a surprise to God. You will never hear Him say, "Oh, wow. Didn't see that coming." I can tell you, from the midst of a detour I wouldn't have chosen, that you don't need to be afraid. The God who created the world is present, and He is in control. The peace that has settled over me these last few weeks is not the norm for me. But it is the norm for God.