Sometimes the encouragement from God’s word comes from the strangest of places. 

 I’m a planner.  Anyone that knows me knows this.  This past year’s uncertainty can be stifling when you are trying to plan things.  Things that have been canceled over and over.  Even as we look at moving forward into “normal,” we have no way of knowing what we can plan and what we can’t.   

 A few weeks ago, I was freshly frustrated with this and that night at Bible Study, while we were reading Nahum (Ever read Nahum? Probably not.  And if you did, it wasn’t encouragement you were seeking; the entire book is about destruction.), this phrase jumped out at me from Nahum 1:15: 

 …Celebrate you festivals, O Judah, and fulfill your vows… 

 In the midst of proclaiming doom and gloom, Nahum tells God’s people, “You aren’t going to know when it will happen, so go on with your regular life.  Do what you need to do that you have always done.”  My soul soaked in those words.   

 Go on with your regular life. 

 I may not be able to plan what I want.  When I do, it may continue to look different, but it is all such a small speck in the big course of things.  I don’t know that this is regular life.  I don’t want it to be, but after living it for a year, there are things that overwhelmed me at the beginning that are just regular now.  And we need to go on.  We need to do the things we need to do.   

 But there is hope!  Hope to celebrate festivals!  Last year’s Easter was strange.  No Good Friday baptisms, no Easter egg hunt with cousins, no Easter Sunday service packed to the gills, no big family dinner.  This year’s Easter will look different too, but small bits of celebration are creeping their way back in.  I’ll take what I can get! 

 In the meantime, I’ll be thankful for small verses that God uses to encourage me from small, seemingly insignificant books in His Word. 

 I’ll continue to hope in the Resurrection, however, we may celebrate it this year. 

 With hope and encouragement, 

 Heather Smith 


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