(Beginning August 1, the content of my blog will be completely different from the Girlfriends in God devotions. So if you are not signed up for my blog at www.localhost/sjold, please do it today…and invite all your friends. We’re going to have more give-a-ways, more personal interaction, and more inspiration than ever before! Now, on to today’s post!)
I was exhausted. I was drenched in sweat. I was filled with an inexplicable joy like I had never known before. It was the day Steven Hugh Jaynes Jr. emerged from my womb and made his grand debut into the world.
Before my son was born, I never knew so much love could be wrapped in one tiny package. After twenty-three and a half hours of pushing and pulling, heaving and ho-ing, he finally decided to leave his comfy sauna and face the bright lights of the delivery room. As soon as the umbilical cord was severed, the nurses whisked him away to make sure ten fingers and toes were accounted for, wrap him in a cozy blanket, and place a cap on his fuzzy head.
We got to visit for a little while, this new little person and I, but alas they needed to run a few more tests to make sure all was well. A short time later, a nurse brought my little man to my room, placed the squirmy bundle on my chest, and smiled.
Steven’s head bobbed about like he was looking for something. He whimpered. He searched. And then he found what he was rooting for. Steven latched on to my body, and the miracle began.
Nourishing, life-giving sustenance began to flow. And for the first time I truly understood the name El Shaddai.
One of the names of God in the Old Testament is El Shaddai. The word El means “mighty” or “strong.” El Shaddai is often translated “God Almighty,” “God the powerful one,” or “God, the mighty one.”
The word Shaddai describes power, but not in the usual thunder-and-lightning sense. This is the power to nourish, to sustain life, to quiet one’s longings.
The Hebrew root word shad may seem an odd choice for referring to God. But if you have ever held a hungry, crying, restless, or anxious babe in your arms and then witnessed the calm that sweeps over him when placed to his mother’s breast, you understand. The crying ceases, the restlessness calms, the hunger is satisfied, and anxiousness melts away. And to that child, the mother from whom life-giving, soul-satisfying nourishment flows seems all powerful.
What a beautiful image of our God who satisfies our every need, calms our every fear, and soothes our every longing.
No matter what you’re going through today, you can cling to the truth that God is El Shaddai, the All-Sufficient One. He has within Himself the life-giving sustenance you need…the life-giving sustenance your heart longs for.
Right now, close your eyes and imagine being wrapped in God’s arms and resting on His chest. Go ahead. Give it a try.
When you open your eyes, leave me a comment and tell me how it makes you feel knowing that God is El Shaddai – the all sufficient One.
If you’d like to learn about the names of God, Gwen Smith, Mary Southerland and I have a brand new book titled Knowing God by Name.It has 8 weeks of devotions that focus on 40 names of God. You can take a peek, buy now, ordownload a free chapter at www.localhost/sjold.