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Release that Hold!

A Commentary by Constance Vanides

"Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding;..." (Proverbs 3:5)

This favorite verse of mine continues to speak to me in times of adversity. It's a reminder not to assume the "I can do it myself" prevailing attitude of great effort, anxiety and struggle when there is an easier way to look upon ordeals that come to us.

Joseph in the book of Genesis is set before us as an example today. His faults as a young man antagonized his older brothers who wanted to get rid of him. Their own human frailties caused the ten brothers to sell Joseph to passing Ishmaelites. They in turn, sold him in Egypt to Potiphar, an officer of Pharaoh and captain of the guard.

"The Lord was with Joseph" is repeated four times in Genesis 39. Even his Egyptian master recognized that the LORD was with Joseph, prospering all he did. Made overseer of his house, Joseph had God's favor over all. When Joseph was placed in prison, God continued to bless Joseph and show His mercy.

At one point Joseph thought he could rely on the chief butler, whose dream Joseph interpreted, to help him out of prison. But the chief butler forgot all about him! It was only when God intervened with a dream He gave Pharaoh that the butler remembered to mention Joseph to Pharaoh. Two years had gone by! (Genesis 40:23; 41:1) Humans will forget, but God does not!

Are we trusting God is with us even during trying times which seem to never end? Or, do we stubbornly plod on under our own steam, believing in a phrase, "God helps those who help themselves," that's not even in the Bible? Just where is our belief? Where do we place our trust?

God has not forgotten. The answer may come at a time when we may least suspect, after having completely released our own hold and given it totally to God. "In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths." (Proverbs 3:6)

See these little birds I've created.
My eye is on every one.
I know each one
and none do I forget.
So it is with you.
There is no need for worry
about the things of life.
I created you in My image.
You are always in My sight.
I know all that you have need of
and will continue to provide.
Only continue to look to Me first
and all that I Am.
I will not forget you.

Constance Vanides
March 19, 2003

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