You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you. Trust in the Lord forever, for the Lord, the Lord himself, is the Rock eternal. Isaiah 26:3-4 NIV
As you know I am still helping my dad recover from a stroke while he is in a skilled nursing facility. Aging is hard. Some days he moves forward and some backwards. Besides being his daily advocate with doctors and nurses, I’m handling his finances, trying to figure out where he goes next, and traveling through the nightmarish maze called Medicare. And while my daughter is doing well in her own recovery and suffering very few migraines, there are still issues I want to attend to concerning her own well being.
For a while I walked in a supernatural peace I couldn’t manufacture, but in the past month I felt the weight of stress on my shoulders again. I found myself trying to grasp that elusive peace, which unlike the joy of chasing a flitting butterfly, added to my stress. So when I read Isaiah 26:3-4 I wondered, if I was trusting the Lord, exactly where did my perfect peace go?
I knew Isaiah was the verse I wanted to share, but I didn’t know how I wanted to illustrate it. Besides, it hadn’t really got it inside of me yet, so as usual, I studied the original language. Isaiah repeats the word peace, shalom, twice. In Hebrew repeated words show emphasis. God promises a double portion, perfect peace. Not what I was experiencing.
But what really had me chewing was the word mind, yetser. Yetser means framework. I thought of framing a house. The framework supports and hold everything that will make that house my home. Exactly where was my frame of mind currently?
Interestingly, the word trust means to lean on and be supported. So it all fits together, especially in light of verse 4; every framework needs a foundation. I choose to be supported on the Rock, the Lord.
Remember the wise man who built his house upon the rock? We know what happens to his framework when the storm comes.
My mental framework for dad was on the wrong foundation. I thought I was leaning into and trusting the Lord, but the enemy had subtly convinced me to lean into doctors’ reports and dad’s progress. A good report proved that God was Good, but what happened when every other day we took two steps backwards? My mind was swaying in the swirling storm, beams bending far past the stress points.
As I studied I saw blueprints in my mind. A structure on a stone foundation, leaning into the Word of God. My frame of mind must be supported on the immovable everlasting Rock, not on my dad’s health reports. Peace eluded me only because the swaying structure of my mind was anchored on shifting sand.
Since I am repositioning my frame of mind onto Christ alone, circumstances haven’t necessarily changed. But because I see through a different mindset, I feel His perfect peace again. I take the storm in stride, praying more effectively, hearing his voice above the many others.
You will guard him and keep him in perfect and constant peace whose frame of mind is supported on You, because he confidently leans on and into You. So trust and lean into the Lord forever; for the Lord God is an everlasting Rock. Isaiah 26:3-4 (My Translation)