Monday, October 6, 2014

Be Still

“You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast,
because they trust in you.” Isaiah 26:3

I stopped halfway through the kitchen. My heart was turning back-flips in the center of my chest. Sitting down and feeling for my pulse, I called my husband to see if I was imagining it. I wasn’t. Two hard beats and then a pause. Two hard beats and then a pause.

As a former nurse, I am cautious about calling 911. This time there was no doubt in my mind. Hooking me up to a 12-lead EKG, the paramedics began the trip into town. Because we live 28 miles from the city limits, I was glad to have someone calm and equipped to care for me. I sat on the gurney praying, “God take care of me and keep my husband safe. Slow my heart.”

Since I am on a heart medication that isn’t well-known in the US, I gave the information to the paramedics. At the hospital, the doctor made it clear he wasn’t comfortable in dealing with it. In the meantime, my monitor went off every few minutes as my heart climbed from 90 up to 206 and then slowed down again. I couldn’t turn to see the monitor without setting it off.

Up to the ICU, where a friendly face greeted me. It’s not encouraging when ICU nurses remember you, it just felt scary. Okay Lord, show them what to do. Over to a regular room. My heart rate was normal—a relief, but what had happened?

Almost twenty-four hours later, someone finally explained. Did it matter that they didn’t entirely understand? Well, I thought it did then, but doctors aren’t the authority. I forgot for a few minutes, but God still held me safe.

Nurses make terrible patients, and I’m no exception, but God was holding me. No matter what happens, He knows best. He will provide. He keeps me safe.

Just as the physical condition of my heart drew my attention at that moment, the spiritual condition of my heart should draw my attention every day.

It may seem as if everything is falling apart, but my heart racing doesn’t mean my mind should race. He can keep me in peace when everything around me is shaking and changing. God is my peace, not doctors, not medications—God. My peace comes from Him. “In every change, He faithful will remain. Be still my soul.”

© Copyright May 4, 2014 by Norma Gail Thurston Holtman

Quote from “Be Still My Soul” by Katharina von Schlegel

About the author:
Norma Gail’s debut contemporary Christian romance, Land of My Dreams, set in Scotland and New Mexico released in April 2014. She is a former Bible Study Fellowship discussion leader who established the first weekly women’s Bible studies in her church in 2003 and continues to lead a weekly small group. Her devotionals, poetry have appeared at, the Stitches Thru Time blog, and in “The Secret Place.” She has led weekly women’s Bible studies for 19 years. She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers, FaithWriters, and the New Mexico Christian Novelists. She is a former RN and homeschool/soccer mom who loves family research, history, and Scotland. Norma lives in the mountains of New Mexico with her husband of 38 years. They have two adult children.


  1. Through it all, God is with us. We are blessed!

    mauback55 at gmail dot com

  2. Yes, God promises to be with us. I love Isaiah 43 1-3 where he promises to be with us through the water and the fire.

  3. Heart conditions are scary. My mom had some trouble with her pulse dropping about a year and a half ago. God intervened in her case too, but it's scary stuff.

    Glad you're doing better!