Standing on Shaky Ground
Are you feeling a bit out of control? Like the world is shaking right beneath your feet and you’re not sure you’ve got what it takes to hold on? I was too. With all that’s going on in the world, who wouldn’t be? I found myself going through each day with a level of anxiety I had not known before. I was thinking about all that was happening and that could happen instead of living in the moment and grabbing whatever joy I could find.
Are you feeling a bit shaky today? Filled with anxiety and worry? You’re trying to be brave for your family and super mom for the kids, but the truth is you are mentally and emotionally exhausted. Spiritually you’re frazzled and hanging on by a thread. Where is God anyway? Your finances are fizzling, your patience is waning. Every cough or sneeze leaves you wide eyed and unhinged, frightened by thoughts of COVID-19.
Early one morning in a moment of uneasiness, pondering what life had become and imagining what it could be, I felt led to an old familiar Psalm. As I read and meditated on Psalm 46:1-3, it ignited a brand-new assurance of God’s presence and power. I felt a calmness and a confidence that had eluded me for months. Are you standing on shaky ground? Be encouraged. God is still at work and in our midst.
God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. 2 Therefore we will not fear though the earth gives way, though the mountains be moved into the heart of the sea, 3 though its waters roar and foam, though the mountains tremble at its swelling. Selah
(Psalm 46:1-3, ESV)
Here’s what I discovered. We have a hiding place, a sanctuary in God. It is in Him that we can find strength for troubled times. The Apostle Paul reminds us that His strength is made perfect in our weakness because His grace is sufficient (2 Corinthians 12). It may take a moment for us to shift our mindsets, but when we call on the Lord for a strength exchange, we can find great comfort, confidence, and victory. We can remember that our lives are now are hidden with Christ in God (Colossians 3:3). We can be mindful and breathe deeply, releasing all that we cannot control. God’s got us. He is as close to us as our next breath. The spirit working within us, is the same spirit that raised Jesus from the dead. When we rest in His nearness, we have no fear. Afterall, not only is He around us because he is omnipresent, but His habitation is within us. We are covered.
The world as we knew it is changing so rapidly. Whether there are wildfires in California or hurricanes on the coasts, we are literally watching the geography of the earth shift right before our eyes. Man-made catastrophes, natural disasters, and the ordinary erosion of the land may transform the earth as we know it, but we have a God who will never change. In fact, verse 3 reminds us to not fear while this is happening.
With the shift in the physical landscape, we are also experiencing an adverse bend in racial injustice. Political tensions are heightened and blatant hatred of the other pepper our existence, causing us to move about with agitation and trepidation. Lies, propaganda, and the manipulation of public opinion through the media is eroding our confidence in those who lead the country day-by-day. Who can we trust? Who can we trust while a pandemic is devasting the country? Who can we trust with a failing economy? When families are facing eviction? When children are hungry? Who can we trust? We can trust Jehovah Jireh. We can trust a Savior who is the way, the truth, and the life. We can trust an unchanging God.
We can trust the God that will never leave us or forsake us. We can trust the God who is sovereign, who still holds the world in His hands. We can trust the God who spoke to the winds and the rains, “Peace. Be still.” We can trust God. We are reminded to hold steadfastly to the hope that we profess because the God who promised is faithful. Even when we are not. Thank God for His faithfulness!
The world can rattle us, fill us with anxiety and leave us standing on shaky ground. But God is our source of stability. I encourage you sit quietly. Take a moment to breathe deeply. Inhale through your nose. Exhale through your mouth. Do that as many times as you find necessary until you feel your body relax. If your tongue is cleaving to the roof of your mouth, you’re not there yet. Try it again. There you are. Now reflect on all that God has brought you through. You are still here. God has been faithful. God is faithful. God will be faithful. He is the same yesterday, today, and forever.
Let us pray: Faithful God, you have been our help in time past and you are present with us in every trouble. Thank you for never leaving or forsaking us. Open my eyes that I might see that even though the world is rapidly changing, You remain the same. Because of who You are, I have everything I need to slay the giants fear and anxiety for when You are present with us, You are more than the world against us. Amen.