Our friend expressed his fear of getting a boat, especially when the water is choppy. A fisherman responded, “Just keep your eyes on something that doesn’t move—a mountain, for example. Then you’ll be fine.”
I often feel seasick with all the changes going on around me—or just plain sick! What is not changing? When I have learned how to use one computer program, it’s time for a “new, improved” version! When I have figured out how to use the latest kind of appliances in a public restroom, there’s a new way to make something turn on or come out of a dispenser or flush down! When I have gotten used to the new structure in my organization—guess what! We get a new one. But just wait a year or two and it will change again. I hope I’m learning to be flexible and go with the flow.
But those are not the important things. Far more alarming are the shifting waves of cultural norms, what is good and what is bad. Things that used to be wrong are now embraced with open arms by many and foisted on others. And things that used to be good are mocked and even called “evil.” Why? Do right and wrong change? Or is there no right or wrong after all?
Beyond all these changing waves stands a steady lighthouse or mountain. It will not change and can help me stay sane if I keep my eyes fixed there. Is it a coincidence that God compares Himself to a rock (Psalm 18:2), a fortress (Psalm 91:2), and an anchor (Hebrews 6:19)?
Do not waver, for a person with divided loyalty is as unsettled as a wave of the sea that is blown and tossed by the wind. Such people should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. Their loyalty is divided between God and the world, and they are unstable in everything they do. (James 1:6b-8)
Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, forever. (Hebrews 13:8)
Whatever is good and perfect comes down to us from God our Father, who created all the lights in the heavens. He never changes … (James 1:17)
I am the Lord your God and I never change. (Malachi 3:6)
Jesus is the Rock: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0XkmWym9vo4
Today I want to share with you some choice thoughts from the Puritan writer John Owens, as quoted by Tim Challies on his blog. Note the startling implications following each positive statement.
A list of seven things that Christ is:
- He is the Way; men without him are Cains, wanderers, vagabonds:—
- He is the Truth; men without him are liars, like the devil, who was so of old:—
- He is the Life; without him men are dead, dead in trespasses and sins :—
- He is the Light; without him men are in darkness, and go they know not whither:—
- He is the Vine; those that are not grafted in him are withered branches, prepared for the fire:—
- He is the Rock; men not built on him are carried away with a flood:—
- He is Alpha and Omega, the first and the last, the author and the ender, the founder and the finisher of our salvation.
It reminds me of an old song from the ‘70s:
Men are trying to find the answers to the questions that never cease
They find in life there’s something missing; they are looking for release
And the way to peace.
He is the way; without Him there’s no going
He is the truth; without Him there’s no knowing
He is the life now and eternally
He satisfies the searching heart and fills men with His love so rich and free!
Two metaphors represent our hopes for our children as well as for ourselves: roots and wings. We need both! And both are found most beautifully in the Lord.
Roots—Who I am, where I belong, who I connect to.
Let your roots grow down into [Christ], and let your lives be built on him. (Colossians 2:7 NLT)
Wings—What I was made to be, growing, developing, achieving my potential.
But those who trust in the LORD will find new strength.
They will soar high on wings like eagles.
They will run and not grow weary.
They will walk and not faint. (Isaiah 40:31 NLT)
Years ago I had a strange dream: A clock whose hands were not anchored down. They were moving, but their movements were out of control, meaningless. To me, this was a vivid illustration of the meaninglessness of a life not centered and anchored in Christ.
But rooted & grounded in God, who is unchanging, the movements of my life (with all its changes) are meaningful & orchestrated.
Whenever I leave a familiar and secure environment to travel to a different place, a switch occurs in my mind. It’s a letting go of all those things in which I find security—friends, routines, resources—and reaffirming my dependence on the Lord who is my true Friend and Resource for whatever may lie ahead.
The Bible contains other metaphors for the stability we have in Christ:
Rock: Ps. 18:2; 31:2
Anchor: Heb. 6:19
Foundation: Is. 33:6; 1 Cor. 3:11
Roots: Eph. 3:16-17