Editor’s Note: Happy St. Patrick’s Day from all of us at Devotionals Daily and FaithGateway! Patrick spread the Word of God across Ireland after he was kidnapped by pirates at age fourteen and sold as a slave to be a shepherd. He later escaped back to his homeland of England where a few years later was given a vision from God to study for the priesthood, be ordained, and then go back to Ireland. Through all his sufferings his faith in the Lord was tested and proved and Patrick went on to preach the Gospel all across Ireland (famously using the shamrock as an analogy for the Trinity) and build churches there to the glory of God. The quote in this devotional is from his poem of trust in God called “The Breastplate”. Enjoy!
May the road rise up to meet you.
May the wind always be at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
And rains fall soft upon your fields.
And until we meet again,
May God hold you in the palm of His hand.
~ An Old Irish Blessing
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As the Father has loved Me, so have I loved you. Now remain in My love. If you keep My commands, you will remain in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commands and remain in His love. — John 15:9–10
Miss Emma’s wrinkled hands cupped my chin, her palm a reservoir for my tears. I walked down the hallways saying tearless good-byes to 119 other nursing home residents, and yet my farewell to her released a levee of pent-up emotions. I couldn’t abandon her. It felt utterly wrong to leave her alone, forsaken in this dark place.
My first “real” job at this institution — which my coworkers and I referred to as “The Brick” — would have been bleak if not for Miss Emma and a few others. Over the one year I worked there, I didn’t allow many details of this place to get beyond the surface of my heart. Yet one name, one person, was chiseled there deeply: Miss Emma.
I perched on the edge of her bed, the edge of our good-bye, unable to leave her. Who’ll sit in the sunshine with you? Who’ll listen? Who’ll sing hymns with you?
Visions of Miss Emma alone left me aching for her. But she was bright with hope. Her beautiful brown eyes brimmed with confidence.
“I’ll be fine, sugar,” she said. “I’m never alone. Don’t you realize the One who created the sun sits with me? He listens always, hearing my prayers and needs. His presence is in the very words we sing to Him. Child, we’re never alone.”
Tucked away from the world, Miss Emma changed mine. She lived securely rooted to the Vine. She read the words of Scripture and tethered herself to Jesus’ love through worship and prayer. Miss Emma lived in the truth of St. Patrick’s prayer:
Christ beside me, Christ before me, Christ behind me, Christ within me, Christ beneath me, Christ above me. ~ St. Patrick
Although she had been abandoned by her earthly family, she rested in the knowledge that her heavenly Father never would leave her. Indeed, He made a home in her so she could nestle in Him.
Might you rest in this comforting truth too? Curl up in His love by writing a Scripture verse on your heart. Lean into God’s sure presence by lifting your voice in praise. Abide in His peace with prayer. Christ is within you, before you, behind you. And as Miss Emma so confidently knew, He will never leave or forsake you. You’re never alone .
Dear Lord, thank You for making a home within me so I may rest secure in You. Because You are my dwelling place, I am never alone. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Even if you are abandoned by your earthly family, you can rest in the knowledge that your heavenly Father never will leave. Indeed, He makes a home in you.
If you have been abandoned or rejected by others, how has this affected your trust level with God?
Spend time in God’s presence today in one of these three ways: praise, prayer, or reading the Bible.
Deuteronomy 31:6; Matthew 28:20
~ By Samantha Evilsizer
Excerpted with permission from Encouragement for Today by Renee Swope, Lysa TerKeurst, Samantha Evilsizer, and the women of P31, copyright Proverbs 31 Ministries
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You are never, ever, ever alone. As a believer in Jesus, you have the Holy Spirit living within you, and He will never leave you. Come join the conversation on our blog. We would love to hear from you! ~ Devotionals Daily