God’s Psychiatry

The Lord is close to the broken-hearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.

Psalm 39:18 (NIV

In 2007, after a second bout with cancer, my dad died. I realize this isn’t the most engaging starting sentence, but please stay with me.

A few months after dad passed, my wife and I were visiting with mom in the home they shared. Longing to reconnect with my father in some way, I ended up in the workshop out back, where he and I bonded over many a project.

I walked out and bumped open the door, which had been closed so long it was stuck shut. The work bench was cluttered with tools and an assortment of nuts and bolts. Dad must have left them when he no longer felt like puttering around the shop. “I NEED to tidy things up,” I thought outloud; “He had a place for everything and everything in its place.”

But I couldn’t. I simply didn’t know where all the stuff went. Standing there holding a mason jar full of orphaned stove bolts, I started to cry. But then I looked up and saw Big Mouth Billy Bass on the wall, a gift from one of my father’s fishing buddies.

I reached up and gave Billy’s red button a push, just for old-time’s sake, and he came to life: flapping his tail and singing that famous Bobby McFaren song—“Don’t Worry, Be Happy.”

But here’s the miracle, that silly fish always started at the beginning, but not today. This time God fast forwarded to the part I really needed to hear–where Billy raises his head, looks at you and sings, “🎶Don’t Worry, Be Happy🎶.”

The Lord (and my dad) wanted me to drop the mantle of over- responsibility I’d taken upon myself. It was a most comforting feeling.

Have you had a, “Big Mouth Billy Bass” type encounter with God?

I’d love to hear about it!

You’re blessed when you feel you’ve lost what is most dear to you. Only then can you be embraced by the one most dear to you.

Matthew 5:4 (MSG)

PS: today would have been dad’s 85th birthday.






46 responses to “God’s Psychiatry”

  1. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Comments like yours can never come too late! I agree about the potential of stories (especially faith stories) to help and encourage each other. That’s why I started blogging!
    I appreciate your reading and sharing your thoughts. Blessings.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. scribelady Avatar

    I know I’m late, but Billy Big Mouth Bass brought back fun memories.. My friend’s dad had one, and every now and then somebody pushed the red button. It was just so funny–standing there watching a fish sing, “Don’t Worry, Be Happy”. It always gave me a laugh. Your post took me back to those days of visiting with Sue and her family.
    I’m glad God broke through to give you the comfort you needed, at exactly the time you needed it. I think if we could each give our stories of how God did that for us, there wouldn’t be enough space or time to do it!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Thank you, brother. You too!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Island Traveler Avatar

    Have a great weekend.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. davidsdailydose Avatar

    God translates for us. I understood what you meant. I’m glad you liked my little poem disguised as a comment 😀. I definitely know about ups and downs, but God is always the same. Thank you, Father!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Tina Avatar

    Actually I was wrong. Your poem was : tried to use a window like a door. Fell from the second floor. That makes it funnier. Since I used a building reference. So yeah, the Lord is funny. 😁

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Tina Avatar

    Hi David. I’m back again and I’m laughing. I was feeling so dissapointed when I left my comment on your blog. I’ve has so many times when God has spoken and comforted me, but for the life of me I couldn’t come up with one off the top of my head. Probably doesn’t help that my brain is a bit tired.

    Anyways, I went to pray and I was feeling so discouraged. God shifted my focus to Him. I know I will write something about that, but then I got really hard on myself because it’s one day up one day down with me. I get caught in those waves. Years ago I prayed about that, but I still get caught in those waves. Even more so now. So I’m in tears and I’m praying, and looking through my prayer journal. I had written a few notations as reminders. When I read the first one I started laughing because it brought to mind that little poem you left on my blog. This is what I wrote on August 13th:

    “Worked on my prayer journal today. It was a slowly productive day. (Thankful) Slow progress is better than no progress. If I try to leap tall buildings in a single bound I’ll only be dissapointed when I hit the ground.”


    Yep, that’s like your poem about hitting the floor. That was definitely a God moment, so I thought you might like to know how He used you today. And thanks so much. He does comfort and remind. He is definitely faithful that way. ❤

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Tina Avatar

    Yes, He definitely does cut through all the whatever. ☺ Thanks so much for the positive feedback on my poetry. I really appreciate that. I do pour my heart into it. God Bless.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Thank you, Tina. There have been a few times in my life when it felt like God cut through all the —whatever—to speak what I needed to hear. I appreciate your kind words about my writing. Your poems, that I’ve read, are all good. There’s not a dud in the bunch. Blessings

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Tina Avatar

    This was really touching. Where God is concerned there is always comfort in loss. Loss and grief is so hard, but when God speaks into our sorrows it does show us how much He cares for us. Jesus weeps too. Thanks so much for sharing. Your writing is so good! God bless you and yours, David.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Thank you! Yes, there is no father like God! And even though I miss my earthly dad, my heavenly dad makes up the difference. Thank you for reading and commenting. Blessings.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Musings&Roses Avatar

    Happy birthday to your Dad. Quite a touching story. I am glad we always have the Father to lay it all on.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Thank you for sharing your story. I’ve had a few “God” moments like that at times in my life. It felt like He cut through everything to send me an unmistakable message.


  14. Matcha Avatar

    Stories like yours inspire people to turn to God.
    I will tell you one of mine, though I believe you already read it.
    I had just gotten out of a relationship that had turned me into a liar. I decided God I was going to choose God instead of the relationship. I started to pray and asked God “Will I ever go to heaven? How can someone who lies go to heaven?”
    After, I turned on a youtube video. An ad came up which had the angel Gabriel praying and addressing the viewer.
    “Don’t let your story get in the way of the truth… I am going to take you home myself.”
    I have never been more sure of a sign than I was then.
    And it was exactly what I needed to hear.
    Praise be to God.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Amen. Me too! I still miss my dad a lot—13 years later. He was the type of person who always knew what to do. I, on the other hand, struggle with that. Blessings.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Island Traveler Avatar

    Happy Birthday to your Dad. Thanks for sharing your story with your dad and how during a difficult time, he and God spoke to you. Most of us take it upon ourselves to carry the weight of the world. I’m guilty of that myself. We could have just entrust all to God everything from the start so as not to worry too much. I wish for us all lots of “No worries, Be Happy,” days ahead. Thanks.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Thanks for reading and commenting, Manette. I actually have a copy of the book you mentioned! My grandparents gave it to me; it was their original copy. I borrowed the title for my post from Rev. Allen, and yes, it’s a great book on the Beatitudes. Blessings.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. musingsofmanettekay Avatar

    I love how you recognize God ministering to you. Wonderful memoir honoring and remember your dad.
    When I saw “God’s Psychiatry,” I thought it was going to be a book review because I’ve read a book with that exact title. It’s a small book by Charles L. Allen originally published in 1953. A very good read in my opinion. I used to keep several copies on my shelf to give away as gifts. Reprints can still be purchased through Amazon.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Thanks, Deandra! God is indeed the best physician. I’m glad you enjoyed the story.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Precious One Avatar

    Today was certainly the day for me to read this about the Lord’s psychiatry. Isn’t He just the best doctor? What a touching story about the legacy of your dad, David, and how wonderful the Lord began the song right where it was needed, “Don’t worry, Be Happy.”

    Liked by 3 people

  21. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Thank you for your kind comment, Angela! God Bless.


  22. Angela Sullivan Avatar
    Angela Sullivan

    I love this so much! Thanks for sharing. He was a wonderful teacher and had such an influence (as did your mom) in many generations of kids.


    Sent from my iPhone


    Liked by 2 people

  23. davidsdailydose Avatar

    We sold my parents house after my mom died, so dad’s shop had to be cleaned out. We found lots of interesting stuff—including over 100 drill bits of all sizes. Yes, I counted them!
    Thanks for sharing about your dad. My dad always knew what to do, so it’s hard sometimes being with our him.


  24. Gary Fultz Avatar

    It’s been a year for my dad being gone. We are still finding half done projects throughout his shop and 80 acres of woods as he couldn’t do anything the last few years and hid it too long.
    It’s good you know a dads wisdom and what he might do or say in our situations.

    Liked by 3 people

  25. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Thank you, Alan. God Bless you, too. I always appreciate your insightful comments—especially at 1 am (Scotland time)!

    Liked by 1 person

  26. holytreasurehunter Avatar

    A very precious story Dave, I could imagine the moment you describe beautifully. Our Father God always finds a way of breaking into a moment at precisely the right second, even if it means using a Billy Big Mouth Bass. One thing such moments show us is that our Father God is ever present, knowing when we need Him most. God bless you brother.

    Liked by 4 people

  27. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Thanks, Viv! It certainly felt like my dad (and God) were sending me a message. Thanks for reading and commenting.

    Liked by 1 person

  28. davidsdailydose Avatar

    You’re welcome, Doris.


  29. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Thank you, CG. I’m glad you could relate. I still miss my dad, and the father and son things we did. But, even today, I can still imagine what he would say about a situation I’m facing. Blessings to you.

    Liked by 1 person

  30. Doris Lambert Avatar
    Doris Lambert

    David,Thank you for this encouraging word. What comfort for all of us! LoveDoris

    Liked by 2 people

  31. CG Thelen Avatar

    This post really touched me. I went through something similar after my father died. He had his workshop in a barn at our place where he worked on projects. (He liked to weld big projects that he couldn’t do in his small garage in town.) For months I left everything in its place, just as he left it. Standing in that workshop mourning, I could feel God’s comforting peace. Thanks for sharing about your dad. Praying God’s peace for you as you remember him on this day.

    Liked by 3 people

  32. Viv Avatar

    What a beautiful, heartfelt tribute to your dad. I love the singing fish David, it probably made him chuckle? 👍☺

    Liked by 2 people

  33. Carey Cambron Avatar
    Carey Cambron


    Sent from my iPhone


    Liked by 1 person

  34. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Yes sir, always!

    Liked by 1 person

  35. Jeffrey H. King Avatar

    HA! I guess he didn’t! But the Light kept the lights on, didn’t he?

    Liked by 1 person

  36. Perth Girl Avatar

    Thank you David. I very much enjoy your writing.

    Liked by 1 person

  37. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Thank you for sharing your friends story. It’s amazing to hear how God comforts us at just the right time and in just the right way.
    I appreciate your engagement with my posts. I follow several Christian bloggers from Australia, and you’re right there at the top! God’s best to you.

    Liked by 1 person

  38. Perth Girl Avatar

    Reading this reminded me of my dear friend who lost her husband. Her daughter was then 5yrs old. She had told me that just after the funeral when she had just put her daughter to bed and was sitting there and was so overwhelmed with grief wondering how she would go on when she felt a hand on her shoulder. She thought her mom had come into the room and was trying to comfort her but there was no one and she felt such a strong presence there. She said I knew it was Jesus and knew that He would carry me through.

    Thank you for sharing this David. It is a wonderful reminder of how God cares.

    Liked by 4 people

  39. davidsdailydose Avatar

    I remember your post about the house sighing! I believe it, brother, and have witnessed God speaking in such a manner more than one.
    One time during a revival meeting, the worship leader was singing the classic song, “Praise the Lord,” by the Imperials. Anyway, when he sang the part, “The devil is a liar…,” he gave it greater emphasis. The lights in the church flickered at that same moment. Clearly, the enemy did not like being called out like that! I’ll never forget it.

    Liked by 1 person

  40. Jeffrey H. King Avatar

    My grandmother died of pancreatic cancer. Because my mom was an RN, she stayed at our house till my mom could no longer handle her. She suffered a lot in that back room until we put her in the hospital. One night my mom took a call from the hospital. We all stood around waiting to hear what it was for. Mom hung up and told us Grandma had just died. The house sighed. It was so unusual that I knew some “future me” would doubt it ever happened so I made a conscious effort to fix the memory in my mind, a sort of “Note to Self.” Yes, it really happened.

    Liked by 2 people

  41. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Thank you, Betty. I appreciate you sharing your story of a family that God helped through a very difficult time. The fish in my story was indeed like that toy that seemed to play on cue. It’s remarkable how God uses everyday things to communicate with us. Blessings to you, Dan and family.

    Liked by 1 person

  42. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Thank you, Crystal. We don’t get to pick who our parents are, and I had two pretty good ones. Blessings.

    Liked by 1 person

  43. Betty Avatar

    A beautiful story. I couldn’t help but remember a similar moment I witnessed in my life. Years ago, my twin sons had a good friend. We knew the family well. The grandfather had taken the friend’s cousin (age 7) fishing. They both were killed in a car accident. As my boys’ friend’s father was preparing the eulogies for his father and his nephew, he thought, dear God, how are we ever going to get through this. At that very moment, a toy, undisturbed, being playing its music. He gave a beautiful eulogy. In time, they donated a bronze statue of the holy family for their church. But they did not put a plaque on it. They wanted people to see it and be uplifted, not reminded of a tragic story. It’s a most beautiful statue, and I will always remember how this family weathered their storm with grace and an outreach to others. I also think of the divine power of “family.” May the memories of your father comfort you on this day.

    Liked by 3 people

  44. Crystal Byers Avatar

    Happy B-Day to your dad! I hope this memory carries you always.

    Liked by 1 person

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