(Editor’s note: In light of the recent catastrophic hurricanes, earthquakes, and violent acts, I felt this article was particularly relevant, even though it was not written to address these specific events. When life and the world seem to be crumbling (perhaps literally) around us, we need a reminder about where our stability comes from.)
God gave me a holy boost of courage in a very odd place. It was in our church sanctuary on a sunny Wednesday afternoon as, for two hours, hundreds of us mourned the loss and yet celebrated the life of Matt, a 22-year-old vibrant, young man, taken unexpectedly to his heavenly home.
That service not only highlighted the life of Matt but also the lives of his parents and brothers. You see, both his parents had been battling cancer for some time. Yes, both! The dad’s cancer had come back seven times. During this particular week his mother needed to squeeze chemo appointments into her days of gut-wrenching grief.
Why did this give me courage? Because, “The rains came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against the house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock.”
Throughout that funeral many things pierced my heart, but somewhere in the middle, as I listened to the words of the family, I suddenly saw their Rock, their Anchor, their Unchanging God, their Hope, their Firm Foundation. He had been there all the time in their valleys! His mercies continued to be new every morning for each of them. As Matt’s life was celebrated their Rock was also being celebrated.
I left there that afternoon deeply sobered, saddened and still shocked by their loss. You see our son was then also 22. But a new seed had been planted in me as I heard these words forming in my heart and mind, “God, you know how fearful I can be deep within, but now because YOU have so clearly been their immovable Rock and their Firm Foundation during these raging storms, I receive new courage from You. You are ALIVE!!! You are FAITHFUL! I will depend on YOU! I need not fear!”
Last month I watched a marriage deeply scarred by adultery begin healing as the young couple ran back to the Rock, their only solid hope.
Last week I cried with a young mom who sees her extended family crumbling all around her. As she spoke of her wobbling faith we committed to re-focus on how we both have experienced the Rock of Ages who never changes.
And last night, I was invited by Bible study sisters to gather and read aloud a list of the many ways we have watched our Rock, our Surety, our God bring us through both the highs and lows, the joys and the sorrows of our lives.
He never will!
How shaky would be my faith IF God, my Savior was moveable like the sands on the shore! His perfect, loving, holy, omniscient, omnipotent, omnipresent, sovereign ways do not waver. I run to the Rock!
Sue Addington lives with her husband, Tom, in Fayetteville. She confesses that she has always had much to share, which is evidenced by her early report cards. God has used that passion for sharing in her as a public school teacher, and especially teaching the Bible to women. These days, she does most of her “sharing” through mentoring.