This morning God used a childhood memory to encourage me as He brought a real sense of security to what had been a rather tumultuous week. As a kid, my family would travel the twenty or so miles to the Roebuck Shopping Center twice a month to buy groceries, clothes if needed, and supper at Jack’s Hamburgers. For my brother and me, it was like a trip to Disneyland.

We would ride on the grocery cart, clinging to it like it was a roller coaster, as my dad pushed it down the long aisles filled with a seemingly endless supply of gastronomic delicacies like Cocoa Puffs, Sugar Smacks, and iced oatmeal cookies. Then it was off to shop at Pizitz’s and J. C. Penney’s. This was my mother’s idea of fun and relaxation. We didn’t get a vote here, so we made the most of it, playing hide and seek in the ladies department under the dense foliage of the dress racks. And then, it was off to Jack’s for the long anticipated dining extravaganza of fifteen cent hamburgers, salty French fries, and cokes. For a kid, life seemed pretty simple and safe.

All of these memories are my treasures, but there is one that is far more precious than any of the others. It happened every time we visited Roebuck, or for that matter, any other place with traffic. As we climbed out of the back seat of that sky blue and white 1956 Chevy into the parking lot, my dad would grab our little hands with his and he would not release his grip until we were all safe inside one of the stores. We hated it. Oblivious to the danger, we did everything we could to get loose, but alas, there was no escape. Daddy’s big hands were far more secure than the infamous Alcatraz prison. As far as I know, neither of us ever came close to escaping.

This morning, as I was reading Isaiah 43, my heavenly Father reminded me once again that I am safe and secure in His hands. Like my daddy, His record is spotless—He has not, nor will He ever lose even one. We are safe and secure in Daddy’s big hands.

“Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name; you are Mine! When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they will not overflow you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be scorched, nor will the flame burn you. For I am the LORD your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior…” (Isa. 43:1b-3a).