After my first son was born, I expected to feel the thrill and joy of being a new mother, totally in love with this new little person. And while I was so thankful for my boy, I found myself feeling overwhelmed, anxious and distressed a lot of the time. There was so much I didn’t know about being a mother, handling sleep deprivation and finding a new sense of “normal” after having a baby.
I was reminded of this verse from Isaiah, and on some of the hard days, it brought hope.
“You will keep the mind that is dependent on you in perfect peace, for it is trusting in you.” Isaiah 26:3, CSB
I wasn’t experiencing much peace. My mind wasn’t dependent on the Lord. I wasn’t leaning on Him, turning my mind towards Him during the dark of nighttime feedings or the frazzled hours of inconsolable crying. I was allowing my mind to stay focused on those feelings of exhaustion and worry and fear, which only led to more distress. In whom was my trust? In myself? In the wisdom of mommy-blogs and parenting books? I was being led by how I felt, and my feelings were a product of sleep-depravity and a post-partum hormonal roller-coaster.
If I wanted the perfect peace Isaiah spoke about, I needed to turn my mind to the Lord, trusting and depending on Him in every moment. I needed to tear my focus away from the feelings long enough to breathe in the Word of God, being refreshed by a perspective that wasn’t awash in the stale air of anxiety and exhaustion. I needed to lie down in the green pastures and beside the still waters where He would refresh my soul with His word (Psalm 23:2-3, Psalm 119:25).
In the years that have followed those newborn days, I’ve found myself returning again and again to this verse in Isaiah, remembering the peace that is possible when I rest my mind on the perfect, eternal Truth in God’s word. Whatever circumstances tempt me to despair – a broken dishwasher we can’t afford to fix, mystery medical problems, long work hours or being far away from those we love – I know that the relief I desire comes only from Christ my Savior. How wonderful that we have a Savior that frees us from the bonds of anxiety and fear!