Sunday, 24 January 2021

Stand on the Rock

I don’t know why we are going through valley experiences any more than I know why we enjoy mountain top moments, but I do know the Lord is with us every step of the way

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The very central scripture of the Bible, indeed the very centre is Psalm 118:8 ‘It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in man’.  Also, this theme can be found throughout the Bible:
Psalm 40:4 ‘Blessed is the one who trusts in the LORD, who does not look to the proud, to those who turn aside to false gods’;

Psalm 62:8 ‘Trust in him at all times, you people; pour out your hearts to him, for God is our refuge’

Many other scriptures remind us again and again where we need to place our trust and yet once more at the beginning of the New Year, I was seeking the Lord and realised that once again we are placing our trust in not just man but a vaccine! Please don’t get me wrong, I have the highest respect for Boris Johnson and all the Medical team advisers.... who would want their job at a time like this?  I am very grateful to the many scientists who have laboured long and hard and will be pleased to receive a vaccine that will protect me from this dreadful virus.

We can get overwhelmed by anxiety, worry, fear and grief.  As a fellowship we are all experiencing all of these emotions.  So, there I sat, at the beginning of the year asking the Lord what I should do.  ‘Here I am Lord, I can’t be sent out to do Your will because we are in lockdown so what do I do that I am not already doing?’ 

Be an encourager, was what I felt the Lord telling me to be.  I must admit I liked that answer because that is something I have always tried to be, an encourager, especially in my working life. My next question then then was....’who do I encourage, how and with what?‘ 

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Now I am always the first to realise the Lord has a tremendous sense of humour because as soon as I had voiced these thoughts in prayer I came upon a picture.  This picture at first sight was anything but encouraging. Picture if you will a small lighthouse with huge waves crashing almost over the very top. The lighthouse looked overwhelmed and I could find no encouragement in this, so asked the Lord to show me what I was obviously not seeing.

Very patiently the Lord showed me that no amount of buffeting winds, rain and stormy seas would dislodge this little lighthouse and the answer was hidden, beneath the water unseen, this lighthouse was built on rock.  This gave me such encouragement as we have all built our lives on the ROCK, but the encouragement did not stop there because once these huge crashing waves subsided, the light was still shining out of the top of this little beacon of warning but also of encouragement.

Other scriptures recently given to us also link in: 

Psalm 23 ‘The LORD is my shepherd, I lack nothing. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, He refreshes my soul. He guides me along the right paths for his name’s sake. Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil, my cup overflows. Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever’

Psalm 23 refers to ‘quiet waters’, but if you are in the company of our Saviour, like the disciples experienced in the storm-tossed boat, we too can know a peace that surpasses all understanding. Our Pastor, Kevin, recently reminded us of my favourite scripture, Romans 8:28 ‘And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose’.

Now I won’t pretend that I know all the answers, only the Lord does, I don’t know why we are going through valley experiences any more than I know why we enjoy mountain top moments, but I do know the Lord is with us every step of the way, in the highs as well as in the lows and if we have our anchor in the ROCK, no amount of buffeting can dislodge us and even more encouraging is the fact that our little light will still shine brightly to help and encourage others to come to safety.

I encourage you to keep your eyes fixed on the LORD and not on the circumstances whatever they may be, the Lord WILL take us through and ‘will never leave us or forsake us’ (Hebrews 13:5).  So please feel encouraged by the fact that we know the Lord has anointed us with oil and our cup overflows and let us share our light with those who feel overwhelmed. We could lead them to the place where they can anchor themselves to the ROCK too.

God bless.

Author: Linda Allitt

May God bless and enrich your life

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