Tumbling in the Sand
“When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you.” – Isaiah 43: 2
I’m not sure there is much to add to these verses. They are a stunningly beautiful, powerful promise. Maybe that is all we need to hear.
Maybe when we are feeling afraid of what is to come we need to hear these words: “you shall not be burned … the flame shall not consume you.”
Maybe when we are unsure where we are going we need to hear these words: “I will be with you.”
Maybe when we feel overwhelmed by all that is ahead we need to hear these words: “they shall not overwhelm you.”
Maybe this is all we need to hear … and indeed, all we really need to know.
It doesn’t seem overly practical to assert that, I suppose. We want solutions and plans and meetings and clear goals. We want something concrete and certain. We don’t want to pass through the waters and fire to begin with! And surely, with decent planning and some forethought, those things could mostly be avoided. And yet, not. I have yet to see it—I have yet to see a human being fully in control of their future. I have yet to see a community that fully knew what was going to come and could prevent tragedy. I have yet to see anyone fully avoid the water and the fire in their lives. None of us makes it through this life unscathed—at least, if we’ve actually lived.
So, this is why I really believe that this is all we really need to hear and all we really need to know. God has embraced us as God’s own. God loves us. God loves you. And that means that no matter what happens: no matter the floods that come, no matter the fires that rage, no matter the pain we encounter or the death we feel, God does not abandon us. And that means that none of those things will have the final word in our lives. None of those things will destroy who we really are. None of those things will keep us finally, from life abundant and eternal. So pause a minute and hear these words spoken to you: “When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you. For I am the LORD your God, the Holy One of Israel, you Savior … Because you are precious in my sight, honored, and I love you … Do not fear, for I am with you.”
Featured image: This is a peice of fabric art titled “Wade in the Water I” of two parts by Trish Williams. See this work, as well as its pair and other beautiful work at Trish’s blog: http://trishwilliamshandworks.blogspot.com