Recently two friends got in touch to let me know about some pretty major events that were happening in their lives. First, Ina called to share that her daughter had tested positive after being leukemia-free for three years. She had just received the heartbreaking news and was overwrought with emotion when she called.

Later that same week, Susan emailed me to say that her husband had unexpectedly been laid off. She was worried that they might have to give up their new house since they were depending on his salary to make the payments.

I encouraged both of them as best as I could and assured them that I’d keep them and their families in my prayers. While thinking about my friends’ circumstances, I remembered that “Break Open in Emergency” sign that’s often posted in public places, usually above a glass box that has a fire extinguisher or a small axe for use in an emergency.

As Christians, we have a “Break Open in Emergency” box too. I’ve found that taking time to find refuge in Jesus and His Word can bring me through. Jesus said, “The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life.” 1 And through taking time to read God’s words and meditate on them, we can find fresh spirit and life—no matter how discouraging our circumstances may seem.

When I called Susan again to find out how things were going, she replied, “Well, my husband hasn’t gotten a job yet, but I’m not worried. I feel sure God is going to take care of us.The best news is that my husband came forward in church last Sunday and was baptized.”

As it turned out, God didn’t fail this couple financially either. By the end of the month, I’d heard again from Susan that her husband had accepted a good job with a multinational company.

Then a text from Ina said that her daughter was recovering rapidly after chemotherapy. Both of them had felt God’s presence with them the whole time they were in the hospital.

Each of my friends found God to be their “very present help in time of trouble” in unique and special ways. They held on to their faith so courageously during trying times, and God brought them through!

  1. John 6:63 ESV