Summary: What is moving the ground beneath your feet today? Is it the loss of a loved one? A marriage that is less than perfect? A job that seems insecure? An illness that threatens your life? A trusted person who has let you down? Faith in God can be restored.
Nowhere to Stand
Psalm 46:1-3 – God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging.
There are times in life when the earth under our feet gives way and we find ourselves falling unable to stand.
These moments occur unexpectedly leaving us flailing to grasp onto something or someone to help us from falling.
This experience has struck several of our families this past summer and some still feel they are caught in the fall.
We who are near them have also been caught in their fall and have done what we thought was right and best in an attempt to help them to their feet.
Sadly our best of intentions, prayers and expressions of compassion have not been sufficient to lift them to a place of solid ground. In such a case as this all we can do is lift them up in prayer, love them and be tender-hearted toward them knowing that the Lord will find a way to put them onto solid ground again.
Our Bibles are full of examples of those who lived through such experiences. On this subject Dr. Billy Graham says “We cannot understand why or how God does what he does.”
Source Billy Graham Christian Workers Handbook pg.137. 1984 World Wide Publications Minneapolis Minnesota U.S.A.
But we can find comfort in knowing that God responds to us with love, comfort and peace that only He can provide when we feel the earth give way under us.
For some the process of grief is a long journey as the emotions are intense and even debilitating. The stages of grief vary in when they visit a person and revisit a person. You may be experiencing some of these emotions as you share in someone else’s grief.
The shock of death, the emotional release of weeping, loneliness, depression, a sense of loss, guilt, anger or hostility, listlessness, a gradual return to hope.
All these stages of grief can visit and revisit a person throughout their lifetime. There will be those for whom healing will take a lifetime.
King David is such an example;
On the death of his infant son he realized that one day he would be with his son again but only after he too would pass through the veil of death. Despite his position as a mighty king and his relationship with God he could not bring his son back to life.
23 But now that he is dead, why should I go on fasting? Can I bring him back again? I will go to him, but he will not return to me.” 2 Samuel 12:23
His infant son died just 7 days after being born. David had prayed over his son and petitioned God but still the child died. 2 Samuel 12:18-19
David had done all he could by fasting and praying but in the end all he could do was to return to God and worship Him.
“Then David got up from the ground. After he had washed, put on lotions and changed his clothes, he went into the house of the LORD and worshiped. Then he went to his own house, and at his request they served him food, and he ate.” 2 Samuel 12:20
When the earth falls from under our feet we will fall to places we never knew existed. We can find ourselves lost.
But we can be lifted from our fall when we return to God in worship. It will be a very difficult thing to do but if we want to be healed and restored we will need to depend on God and not people.
People will let you down, people are imperfect no matter how well-meaning but our God is perfect. Perfect in every way, perfect in His love toward us, perfect in His strength to uphold us and save us, perfect in His plan to bring us to an everlasting life with Him in Heaven.
Like David each of us has to be willing to fall into the arms of God in order to be healed, in order to be raised up and have our feet rest upon solid ground once again.
For some that worship may begin in private. For others they may find strength in being with other Christians who have also experienced such a shift in the ground. Just as our Sunday school children sang we know that…
“By the living word of God I will prevail” Source: Hymn Standing on the Promises of God Russell Kelso Carter 1891
That living word is our Saviour Jesus. Through Jesus we will overcome the shifting earth beneath our feet.