Today’s Truth

Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Philippians 4:7

Friend to Friend

My husband, Dan, has battled high blood pressure since we first married over thirty years ago. Hmmm…now that I think about it, there just might be a connection there! Nevertheless, for several years, Dan struggled with an irregular heartbeat, a debilitating condition that drains energy and generally promotes a compelling sense of exhaustion.

Now you need to understand something very important about my husband. Dan Southerland is not accustomed to doing anything short of full speed ahead, so you can imagine his frustration and my concern. Little did I know that the opportunity for fear and worry would escalate to a whole new level when, at 2:30 am on March 15, Dan looked at me and said, “Honey, I think you need to call an ambulance.” I already had.

Sweat was dripping from his body like rain, followed by waves of excruciating chest pain, dizziness and nausea. The ambulance arrived six minutes after I called and began to work on my now semi-unconscious husband. I heard one paramedic say, “I can’t get a blood pressure reading, pulse or vein.” Dan gained consciousness for a few seconds to say, “I love you. Go get Danna.” I knew what he was saying and I was not having it! I climbed up on the bed beside my precious husband and in my kindest, most merciful voice said, “Honey, if you die, I will absolutely kill you! You are not going anywhere! You are staying right here! Do you understand me?” That declaration certainly grabbed the attention of the paramedics whose heads snapped up to see the lunatic wife in action. I then called for reinforcements. “Danna, get in here,” I yelled to our then 20-year-old daughter who was already dressed and standing behind me. If her eyes had not been twice their normal size, I would never have known she was terrified. “What’s up, Dad?” she asked. That’s my girl! The paramedics finally got an IV going and within minutes, Dan was feeling much better.

A quick sidebar: For weeks, I had been telling Dan how much I loved Carrie Underwood’s song, “Jesus Take the Wheel.”

The paramedics lifted Dan onto a stretcher and into the ambulance. Danna said, “Mom, you ride with Dad. I’ll follow you so we will have a car at the hospital.” As I climbed into the passenger side of the ambulance, the radio was on and the first words I heard were “I can’t do this on my own. Jesus, take the wheel.” God’s peace settled around my heart and soul like a familiar friend and I celebrated the love of a God who cares enough about His daughter that He played her favorite song at the precise moment she needed to hear it. You see, when the paramedic climbed into the driver’s seat, he said, “I’m sorry, Mrs. Southerland, but we can’t have the radio on during a call.” I smiled and responded, “I didn’t turn it on. It was on when I got in.” His eyes said it all. “This woman is nuts!” But I knew the presence of God was in that ambulance, with my husband, with me, and with whatever we were facing.

Why do we doubt Him? Why do we worry? Yes, He is Lord of the Universe, but He is also Shepherd of every valley. He is Love. He is Peace.

Over the next nine days, Dan was in the hospital as they ran tests and inserted a defibrillator. God was with me every step of the way, and He will be there for you, my friend. No matter where you are, no matter how hopeless your circumstances may seem, no matter how deep and dark the pit – He is at work in and around you. Just give up and surrender the wheel of your life, trusting Him to make a way where there is no way.

Let’s Pray

Father, please forgive me when I give in to fear and worry instead of stepping out in faith and believing You. I want to become a woman who trusts You – no matter what. My faith is small, but I now choose to place it in You.

In Jesus’ Name,


Now It’s Your Turn

Scripture tells us that without faith, it is impossible to please God. Matthew 17:20 also tells us that even a tiny amount of faith pleases Him. (Jesus) replied, “I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”

A mustard seed is tiny, but once planted, it grows into a huge tree. Jesus said a little faith has incredible results. We don’t need a lot of faith – just as much as a mustard seed to produce great results. Why? Because our God is an awesome God and our faith depends on Him!

What is the greatest storm in your life today?

What step do you need to take to face that trial with faith instead of fear?

What is keeping you from trusting God and stepping out in faith?

More from the Girlfriends

Are you stressed out – facing financial problems, health issues, or dealing with difficult relationships? God will be your peace. Get Mary’s book, Escaping the Stress Trap, and learn how to transform the promises of the Twenty-third Psalm into easy-to-implement, practical steps that will hand you the keys to stress management.

Be sure to check out Mary’s book excerpts, articles, and FREE MP3s. Connect with Mary on Facebook or through email.

29 Responses to “Surrender the Wheel to God”

  1. Delores says:

    Hi Mary,
    I shared last year a few days after my beloved son committed suicide.As February14th draws closer the feeling of sadness is all around me.I can feel the storm coming.Thank you for sharing your story and reminding me to let go of wheel and allow Jesus to take control.

    • Allison says:

      Oh sweet Delores, cling to God. Draw near to him! Hold on to God’s unchanging hand. Psalms 103:3 “who redeems your life from the pit, who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy”. The lord will pick you up and take you out of the depths of sadness!

    • Delores, I cannot even begin to imagine the pain you are feeling. But I know your God understands. He lost His only Son. I encourage you to read Psalm 40:1-3 and cling to that promise. God will be your strength and your peace. Blessings.

  2. Deana says:

    Thank you Lord for allowing the words of the girlfriends be a ministry and blessing to me and many others! I wanted to pray that and thank God and now to thank you all for beautiful words from God every morning of my devotion. Yesterday, the devotion was on loving your husband. After I read it, I prayed then text my husband words of encouragement. He called me and said he needed that reassurance at that time. Today, I am up early worried about things. I read my devotions, and it’s the bible verse I found written out on a post it note in my desk yesterday. I used to have it taped to my mirror to read every morning. God is beyond great! He knows just what we need when we need it. Thank you for a beautiful ministry.

    • Thank you for your kind words of encouragement. God does know what we need when we need it. We are so thankful to be in ministry together and to do life with women like you. God bless you!

  3. Eve Smith says:

    Mary, Thank you for sharing your story. I love when G-d reveals Himself in ways that we can understand, or in ways that are so out there that we know it’s Him. There is nothing more precious than knowing He chooses to communicate with us in subtle ways, a whisper even, that will grab our attention even during a storm. G-d is so good and faithful, He is worthy of praise!

    Be Blessed!

    Eve Smith

  4. Joanna says:

    Thank you for this message this morning. I am having such a hard time with anxious thoughts. They are robbing me of His joy and peace. I need to let Jesus take the wheel. He has proven Himself faithful time and again. Please pray for me.

  5. Agnes says:

    For nine months in 1997 my 48 year old husband was dying of lung cancer. In my jeans pocket I had written on an index card the verse Philippians 4:7. I kept it in my pocket the entire nine months. Whenever I was in the dumps I whipped it out when things seemed good I whipped it out. It gave me comfort every time. You see, I knew my Heavenly Father was with me all the time and I wanted to thank Him for every good and wonderfull thing in my world. I loved Him so much. That was 20 years ago. My husband passed on 10-31-1997. Recently someone I know was in distress I gave them my index card and told them to keep it in their pocket. Then I thanked my Heavenly Father some more

  6. Peggy carman says:

    Oh, I so needed to read this devotion today. I need to let God take the wheel in all these areas of my life. thank you girlfriends in God for sharing this today as I feel this was a message from God to me as I so often try to do things on my on without his help. 🙏

  7. Lynn says:

    Thank you Mary for sharing this today. I really needed to read it. God is closer to us than we realize.

  8. Jacqueline says:

    Thank you so much for this wonderful reminder, isn,t it often like this that the Holy Spirit gives us a word a phrase or psalm to bring comfort, i needed to be reminded today that fear has been trying to worm its way in again so thank you.
    Be still and know I am God and i hear God say Hush to soothe a troubled child as a loving Father would say to His beloved child.
    love Jacqueline

  9. Rebecca Jones says:

    It reminded me of a post I titled “Don’t Let the devil Drive. ” Glad your husband was okay.

  10. Alzada says:

    This message spoke to me right on time. Surrendering the wheel to what appears to be one of the longest challenges in my life. I thought the circumstances was going to be over soon and almost gave up. Praying for continued strength and peace. Praying for this mountain between us to move soon.

  11. Stephanie says:

    So easy for fear to rob me of joy . Great devotion today ! I worry about my sons. One is far from God . I needed the reminder to let go and let God do what he does best

  12. Abby says:

    Thank you for this devotion. Right now I am dealing with a teenager and fighting for my marriage. I know God is in control.

    • Abby, I am praying right now for your teenager and for you as you model the stubborn love of God. And for your marriage, I am asking God to give you the strength to fight and not give up. Stand firm, friend. God is with you and for you.

  13. Angela says:

    My phone was messed up yesterday and wouldn’t let me view this now I believe it was God. Although it might have helped with the day I had I believe that BECAUSE of the day I had yesterday and the way I reacted, God was able to speak to me more clearly and give me a better understanding when I read this today. Thank you Lord and thank you GIG for your powerful ministry!!!

  14. Julie says:

    I needed this so much! My 4 yr old was diagnosed with cancer last month. She has had 2 surgeries, one to remove the cancer and her right kidney. Yesterday was her 4th chemo session. Surrounded with kids like her, her hair starting to fall out, and her loosing weight made yesterday just so hard. I was filled with fear and worry. But I’m going to let Jesus take the wheel!!!!!! I can’t do this on my own. Thank you for this devotional!

    • Julie, I am so sorry for the pain you and your little one are experiencing! Stand firm in your faith and when you can’t stand, allow Him and those around you to hold you strong! We are praying for you. Blessings!

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