No Other Rock

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Psalm 37:1 starts with “Do not fret…”

Isaiah 44:8 says, “Do not tremble, do not be afraid. Did I not proclaim this? You are my witnesses. Is there any God besides me? No, there is no other Rock; I know not one.”

The image here is symbolic. It calls into mind great strength, support, and large presence. It calls into mind stability, impregnability, and might. Some years ago, I was standing in a hallway near my office when an earthquake actually happened (really shocking for the Hampton Roads area) and walls and floors actually moved. There was nothing substantial to hold onto. It passed, thankfully, and no one was hurt and no damage was observed. Maybe a crack or two in the sidewalks and parking lot. But, experiencing an earthquake will surely make you think. Where do we find safety?

Then there was that time when I tripped on a local side street and broke my arm. Wobbly shoes, uneven pavement, rushing, progressive lenses. A bad combination. I saw stars. I still feel that injury on rainy days. I learned to appreciate solid footing, supportive shoes, physical therapy and cautious steps. That injury surely made me think. Where do we find safety?

Then there is life in general. Pretty unsafe, I’d agree. Many are over-distracted with home security, car security, school security, retirement security, health security… You name it. Where do we find safety? Jesus Christ is the Rock of our faith, but we often like to back up our fragile faith with dependence on other security measures. We build our protective fences, thinking we have a measure of control. We get paralyzed by worry and may forget the strong foundation that Jesus provides. Walking by sight instead of faith leads us to make fear-based decisions. This leads us away from God’s truth.

Yet our Savior is always present to provide firm eternal footing. The only basis for security is the finished work of Jesus Christ on the cross. Jeremiah 10:12 says that God founded the world by His exquisite power and wisdom and understanding. Then, He sent His Son to be the surpassing, rock strong foundation of our faith. Because of Him, we are spiritually safe.

Let me backpedal. Practical plans to ensure the physical and financial protection of our families have an appropriate place in earthly life. But, God says that we have no need to tremble and no need to be afraid. If we are the Lord’s witnesses and if heaven is our eternal home, then we give our tears, cares and fears to him. He is our Rock.

Here’s where we land in faith. From the familiar hymn by Edward Mote, we pledge, “On Christ the solid Rock I stand. All other ground is sinking sand.” I am a witness. It’s true. There is no other Rock.

 

Not Today

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Psalm 37:7 “Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for Him…”

I’m not going anywhere today. I can’t. The new fallen snow, though beautiful, boxes me in at the very back of a heavily wooded neighborhood. Ugh!

However, having unhurried time, no places to be in particular, and no deadlines that won’t be moved due to inclement weather… Well, there’s a real silver lining in this predicament. Stillness. Patient waiting. Radical. Though costly in a consumer world, though foreign in a distracted world, though unplugged in a techno-world. It is quiet in God’s world today. Snow is a beautiful reminder of the wonder of stillness. Stillness before the Lord.

Hebrews 11:7 says, “By faith Noah, when warned about things not yet seen, in holy fear built an ark to save his family. By his faith he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness that comes by faith.” Noah was a true hero. In stillness, he was able to hear from the Lord. In patience, he was able to build and build and build for over 100 years and endure whatever ridicule went along with it. He heroically, but soberly served the Lord. And it was costly.

Arthur Ashe once said, “True heroism is remarkably sober, very undramatic. It is not the urge to surpass all others at whatever cost, but the urge to serve others at whatever cost.” Sometimes serving the Lord involves being still. Sometime serving others involves being still. Sometimes it involves waiting patiently.

Today is a good day to be still. A good day to wait patiently on the Lord. A good day to be grateful for real heroes. My hero husband has already knocked the snow off my car – because he knows how my mind works (I don’t usually want to be still)… I am very grateful that he knows me so well.

Psalm 46:10 says, “Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” So, I’m at a standstill today, but glad for it. Grateful today for my Holy Hero – Jesus Christ. Thanking Him for the beautiful snow that commands stillness and reminds me of Him.

I’m not going anywhere today. I can’t. I’m going to be still and wait.