Daily Bread April 08

God Holds You Close
Karen Anne Smith of Ludington, MI, USA

My brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of any kind, consider it nothing but joy, because you know that the testing of your faith produces endurance; and let endurance have its full effect, so that you may be mature and complete, lacking in nothing. -James 1:2-4

God holds you close.

I’ve shared these comforting words of affirmation often these last few months. I’ve shared them with all the love of my heart, praying for a blessing of healing and hope for those that read…

God holds you close.

Now it’s my turn to hear. Now I’m the one that faces a frightening unknown. Covid is in my precious son’s home, but Alex, his housemates, his wonderful helpers among the staff, are all precious.

God holds them close.

If I let my imagination run away with me, I can see all kinds of sorrow; but that is not faith. As I repeat my mantra every time fears wells up, I feel better. As I continue to remind myself of God’s presence, I actually feel God near. Fear is replaced by a deep-down assurance, peace. Whatever happens, God journeys with us; through it all, God holds us close.

Whatever happens in your life, you are not alone. Whatever happens, you are cherished by the Divine. Whatever happens, God holds you close. When feeling overwhelmed or afraid, remind yourself of that simple fact. Make it your daily mantra. Make it a breath prayer. Slowly breath in “God,” and then slowly exhale “holds me close.” Repeat it a few more times every time anxiety wells up, and remember you are loved.

God holds you close.

Prayer Phrase

“Practice Resurrection” (Wendell Berry).

Spiritual Practice

Breath Prayer

During this Easter season, we invite you daily into a breath prayer focused on resurrection. With each exhale, respond in a word or phrase to the question, “What is dying?” (fear, anger, assumptions, etc.) With each inhale, notice a response in a word or phrase to the question “What is rising?” (love, courage, trust, etc.) You may choose to use the same word or phrase throughout this season, or let each day bring its own unique response to this sacred pattern of dying and rising that is central to our faith.

Today’s Prayer for Peace

Engage in a daily practice of praying for peace in our world. Click here to read today’s prayer and be part of this practice of peace.

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