Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "Take Up Thy Cross"1 (Lyrics)
One of my most difficult challenges was raising a son with autism. Many times, I was at my wits' end.
Psalm 107:27-31 – They reeled and staggered like drunken men; they were at their wits' end. Then they cried out to the Lord in their trouble, and he brought them out of their distress. He stilled the storm to a whisper; the waves of the sea were hushed. They were glad when it grew calm, and he guided them to their desired haven. Let them give thanks to the Lord for his unfailing love and his wonderful deeds for men. (NIV)
Until recently, I was unaware that the expression, "at wits' end" originated in the Bible. It literally means to "have wisdom swallowed up." This type of "wisdom" is worldly and lacking direction from the Holy Spirit. In Psalm 107, the sailors "reeled and staggered" in vain. They were like drunken men trying desperately to fix the problem on their own.
But notice four things that happened when the sailors finally cried out to the Lord:
- 1. He brought them out of their distress.
2. He calmed the storm.
3. He restored their gladness.
4. He brought them to a safe harbour.
Although the Scripture portrays a true-to-life storm at sea, this place called "at wits' end" represents many types of situations such as illness, financial problems, the loss of a loved one, etc. In raising my son, there were times when I chose to dismiss the world's advice, seeking the Holy Spirit's guidance instead. I can honestly say that He has never failed in helping me to make the best decisions for my child.
In Jeremiah 33:3, the Lord tells us, "Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know." (NIV) What a wonderful promise for those who believe!
The New Testament reveals that Jesus is the power and wisdom of God. He will deliver us from the deep waters that threaten our soul, or from the miry depths of a hopeless spirit. What is more, He will provide peace, even in the midst of a storm.
In 2 Corinthians 12:8-9, the apostle Paul writes about his thorn in the flesh, "Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But he said to me, 'My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.' Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me." (NIV)
Be assured that the Lord's wisdom can never be swallowed up. So then, why wait till we're at our wits' end before seeking His counsel?
Prayer: Heavenly Father, we praise You for the wisdom revealed in Your Son, like a light shining in a dark place. We humbly ask You to guide us safely through the storms of life by the power of Your Holy Spirit. May our faith be a testimony that leads others into Messiah's kingdom. In Jesus' precious name, we pray. Amen.