Today marks the second anniversary of my open-heart surgery. I am so grateful to be here! There were complications that arose during the surgery and I almost died. I did not wake up for three days, but sometime during those three days something very significant happened to me. God spoke to me, only three words, but they changed the way I think about Him.
I remember only a little from those three days. I remember hearing familiar voices though I could not get to where they were. I remember being confused and frightened. I didn’t know where I was or what had happened to me, but I knew God. I knew He promised never to leave me or forsake me, but I couldn’t find Him. I cried out to Him, “Where are You?” And immediately He answered me, “I’m right here.” It was the same quiet voice I had heard many times before, entirely loving, utterly void of condemnation. I was confused and troubled but He was not anxious, not surprised, not confused, not concerned. I said, “I thought You’d be different.” I thought because I was upset and confused and frightened, He would at least be concerned about my condition. It’s funny how we equate anxiety with love. But God was not anxious about me. He had me and nothing was out of control. I cannot tell you the peace that gave me.
I had forgotten that God never changes. He is never worried about me. He is never surprised or upset or confused. He is not even concerned because He is God and He already has a plan for everything. He knows the end from the beginning and holds it all in His hands. He cannot be overwhelmed by anything! He is the One fixed center around which all creation turns. He is the One absolute in the midst of universal wavering. His sovereignty is so unquestionable that with three words He quelled my fear and straightened out my perspective.
“I’m right here,” He said. and His Presence made everything alright. The circumstances were the same — I still did not know where I was or what had happened to me — but the reminder of His Presence with me settled my soul.
Today, two years later, I am so very grateful my heart still beats and there is breath in my body. But I am even more grateful that God is in control and that His love for me is as unchangeable as His sovereign power.
. . . for He Himself has said, “I will never desert you, nor will I ever forsake you,” so that we confidently say, “The Lord is my helper, I will not be afraid, . . . Hebrews 13:5-6 (NAS)