Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious hands. Isaiah 41:10 NLT
On August 24, 1996, I married my soul mate, Brandon, in front of all of our family and friends. As I walked toward him down the long aisle of the church, butterflies swarmed in my stomach. My palms grew sweaty as I realized every eye in the sanctuary was on me at that precise moment. I smiled as I glided along but on the inside, my nerves threatened to conquer me.
Proceeding with the ceremony, we bowed together in prayer at the kneeling bench. As we knelt there, eyes closed, heads down, and hearts open, my hands started to tremble. In the midst of the preacher’s eloquent blessing prayer, Brandon reached over and placed his hand over top of my right hand. He squeezed my palm and kept his hand there throughout the rest of our time on the bench. He spoke no words, but it was as if he was saying to me by his gentle touch,” It’s ok, I’m here for you. Don’t be nervous. Everything will work out fine. I’m here no matter what.”
His small act of love warmed my hand and my heart. He brought peace with his touch and calmed my anxiety. From that instant, a calmness washed over me as my nerves were pushed to the back pew and my excitement for the future welled up inside me. I knew we were meant to be and his effect on me further proved the point
Throughout our marriage, Brandon’s hands have been there to help calm my nerves and tensions on many occasions. From praying for me, to wiping tears from my eyes, his gentle touch always makes it better. He is always there to take his turn driving the kids to their activities or washing the dishes because I am stressed or too busy to get it all done.
And those hands have shared in an abundance of happy moments, too. They were there to cradle both of our newborn babies closely to his chest. They shoot basketballs with my son and hit volleyballs to my daughter.
They toss sticks to our rowdy dog as he playfully fetches them. They hold me close as we celebrate birthdays and anniversaries. They guide me on beautiful walks on the beach and in the forest as we hike to see waterfalls. They teach small group Bible studies at church and type on the computer countless hours to provide for our little family.
Brandon is faithful to always be there, no matter what- just as he “said” to me with his graceful hands on our wedding day.
God is a lot like that. He is always available to help me with His trustworthy guidance…any day, any hour, any second. He promises in Isaiah to provide strength and assistance when I’m struggling. He desires to calm my fears and give peace with His presence. He gives hope with the reassurance in my relationship with Him as my Lord and Savior.
I have confidence in His ability to be victorious over any obstacle. His relentless love constantly pursues me and continues to work personally in my life every day He cares so much about me (and you) that He reaches out to grasp me tightly with His Holy hand when I’m too feeble to stand on my own.
As I think about how God moves in my life, I realize part of God being faithful to His promises in Isaiah is by sending Brandon into my life. He has blessed me with a devoted husband to do life with- through the good, the bad, the ugly, and the beautiful. It’s almost as if Brandon’s hands are an extension of God’s own hands, always there guiding, protecting, and helping.
Take comfort in the knowledge God loves you and wants to share in every part of your life, no matter how big or small. He is dependable and loyal to His Word. He will not fail as you trust Him in every area of your life, giving over all your thoughts, worries, dreams, and hopes to Him. Let the Lord’s hands provide tranquility on your amazing journey of life.
Lord, thank you for being my Lord and Savior and for caring so much that You desire to have a personal relationship with me. You are steadfast as You share in all the moments of my life, whether good or bad. Grow my trust in You as I learn to depend on You completely. In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.
Alisha Ritchie writes from North Carolina where she enjoys spending time with her husband, Brandon, of almost twenty years, and two busy but wonderful teenagers, Zack and Abby. She is a Physical Therapy Assistant by profession but in recent years has also become a multi-published author of devotions and inspirational stories to inspire others in their walk with God. You can read more of her writing at www.seekhimdaily.wordpress.com