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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Calm (emotionally) (09/13/07)

TITLE: The twin truths that keep us going
By Suzanne R
09/20/07


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As majestic as a towering lighthouse on a rocky peninsula under a blue sky, seagulls playfully swooping by, is my God. As strong as that lighthouse on the dark night, waves and debris slamming into its concrete walls, is my Lord.

Unlike a lighthouse, my God never requires maintenance and will never break down.

***************


As tender as a teary-eyed mother is towards her new-born infant is my God. As loving as that parent is to the soft-skinned babe in her arms is my Lord.

Unlike fallible parents, the love my God has for his less-than-perfect children will never wane.

***************


“One thing God has spoken, two things have I heard: that you, O God, are strong, and that you, O LORD, are loving.” (Psalm 62:11-12a NIV)

The certainty of God’s strength and love is what keeps us going in the hard times, just as it sustained the Psalmist.

***************


Consider Priscilla, the round-bellied woman who lies flat and watches the image on the screen from the ultrasound. Her husband stands proudly by her side. God is loving.

Just weeks later the same woman stands at the glass wall of the neo-natal intensive care unit, bags under her eyes, cheeks hollow, hair limp, hands caressing the glass. It’s a close as she can get to the tiny life hanging by a thread inside.

“Find rest, O my soul, in God alone; my hope comes from him. He alone is my rock and my salvation; he is my fortress, I will not be shaken.” (Psalm 62:5-6 NIV)

It is all she can do to verbalize the words of Scripture. Believing them is an act of the will that surely is unreasonable to expect.

The baby boy survives. God is loving. Yet if the child had not lived, God would not have ceased to be loving. Priscilla knows that with her head.

***************


Twelve children from the special needs class gather in Pricilla’s home. It is her son’s birthday party. Most other parents and carers retreat to the front room with cups of tea and coffee. Priscilla oversees the mayhem in the back garden. Add to the chaos of excited children who have had too much sugar the fact that each child here has extra physical and behavioural needs. Priscilla opens the pantry to get another bottle of juice concentrate and considers crawling under the bottom shelf for a time herself. What is she doing, hosting this celebration alone?

“Trust in him at all times, O people; pour out your hearts to him, for God is our refuge.” (Psalm 62:8 NIV)

“How does she keep going?” The other mothers gossip in Priscilla living room. “Her no-good husband finally gone, money clearly very tight and a child with all those problems. Terrible, just terrible.”

Out the back, Priscilla unwittingly mutters the answer. “My salvation and my honour depend on God; He is my mighty rock, my refuge.” (Psalm 62:7 NIV)

***************


Priscilla’s boy towers over his mother. Dressed in a suit, his usually cheery face serious with the magnitude of the task before him, the young man begins his long walk. Beside him, the petite middle aged woman puts her arm through his and by the pressure of her arm, sets the pace.

They reach the altar. The young man refuses to let go of his mother. Eventually, the service proceeds with Priscilla flanked by two men – the one now her husband and the other her son. The three walk out together to the organ music.

It is easy to believe in a strong and loving God on a day like this.

***************


Like Priscilla, on some occasions, it was all the Psalmist could do to simply cling on to the head knowledge. The heart knowledge seemed too tenuous to grasp. The Psalmist recalled the facts, even though the feelings were far from firm.

“One thing God has spoken, two things have I heard: that you, O God, are strong, and that you, O LORD, are loving.” (Psalm 62:11-12a NIV)

Regardless of our lot in life, regardless of the way we are treated by others, regardless even of the way we view ourselves, two truths remain.

Like a lighthouse, firm and resilient in sun or storms, our God is strong. In fact, He is even stronger.

Like a new mother who finally holds in her arms that longed-for baby, our Lord is loving. In fact, His love is even more intense and eternal besides.

God’s strength and love - that’s what keeps us going.


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This article has been read 798 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Kristen Hester09/20/07
This is beautiful. I espeically loved the 5th part at the party. I thought it was going to be a first person story and then it seemed to become something else. I liked how you followed Priscilla through the changes of her life. Blessings!
Lynda Schultz 09/20/07
What a wonderful jounrey. Thanks for taking us on it.
Joanne Sher 09/22/07
This is masterfully crafted and beautifully told. I love the structure of it, and the voice especially. This blessed me.
Venice Kichura09/26/07
WOW, but this really ministered to me! Masterfully written!
Amy Michelle Wiley 10/02/07
Beautiful story. At the beginning I found the format a little hard to follow, but I love the real-life truths here.