Welcome to Real Life. I’m all shook up!
“I welcome change
as long as nothing is altered
or different than before.”
We all go through seasons of shaking. Often when we least expect it, life changes. We want to walk the old paths. We reach for the comfort of old routines, but they are gone.
Israel was shaken in the prophet Isaiah’s day. Once thriving and powerful, in their prosperity, the people rebelled against God and removed themselves from his protection. And so, he allowed first Assyria, and then Babylon to conquer them. In their turmoil, however, God never has and never will abandon his people.
“Though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed,yet my unfailing love for you will not be shakennor my covenant of peace be removed,” says the Lord,who has compassion on you.(Isaiah 54:10)
This year, my mountains have been shaken. Hills have been removed. After a decade of fairly stable health battling stage 4 breast cancer, my sister Theresa began hospice care in April. While assisting her, I seriously injured my back. This resulted in months of pain, doctor visits, tests, and therapy. I was forced to rethink the way I stand, sit, and move. As my back was finally beginning to heal, my sister left this world for heaven. Then, a couple of weeks later, I sprained my ankle. This aggravated my back injury. I was shaken.
In physical and emotional pain, I reached for the comfort of old routines. But they were gone. I could no longer pick up the phone and hear my sister’s voice. My friend from the moment of my birth was no longer there. In good times and bad, writing isn’t just my passion, it’s therapy. It helps me organize my thoughts and make sense of life’s experiences. But in my grief, I could not write. My mind was a blank screen. In addition, I love to walk. And not simply for exercise, walking clears my head, boosts my energy, and lifts my spirits. But first my back injury and then my sprained ankle prevented me from donning my walking shoes. The old paths were gone.
When life’s rhythms are shaken and the ground beneath us moves, we can rest upon, lean into, and cling to Jesus Christ. I repeated these holy words until their truth assuaged my soul. “Though mountains be shaken and hills be removed…” Whatever happens, this never changes. God cares. His love never fails. He is the immovable, unshakable bedrock of our lives.
Honestly though, my difficulties sometimes caused me to question, “Is this love? Why, Lord, have you allowed this pain and suffering?” First, I needed to remind myself. God most assuredly loves us. He forever proved it when sent his Son to die on a cross for you and me. This covenant of peace—hard won and sealed through the blood of Christ—can never be removed.
Second, my pain serves as a stark reminder. This world is not heaven. Every one of us will experience some trouble, pain, and death in this life. I tend to believe an easy life is a blessed one. But God never called us to ease and comfort. Saints throughout the ages have suffered much. Christ himself endured an excruciating crucifixion. Eleven of his disciples were martyred. Sometimes, God delivers us. Other times, he meets us in the fire.
Third, in the crush of today’s trails, I can forget God’s faithfulness yesterday. The final year of my sister’s life was rife with pain, broken limbs, and hospitalizations. If I focus solely on that, I forget the miracle. God blessed Theresa with eleven years of life with stage 4 breast cancer! I am so grateful for those years with her. Thank you, Lord!
When our world is shaken, God’s love stands firm. He sees our hurt, our pain, our tears, and he cares deeply. Life changes. Mountains may tremble and hill be removed. The old paths may be gone. But God’s presence, his peace, and his love never fail. That, my friend, will never change!
Dear Lord,I pray for those who feel like their lives are coming apart.Though mountains are shaken and hills removed,Help us trust in your unfailing loveAnd lean into your heart of compassion.We need you. We cannot do this life apart from you.Guard our souls with your peace.We trust you, Lord.And those who trust in you will never be put to shame.In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.
Take it further…Listen to “Another in the Fire” by Hillsong.
Republished with permission from Blogs.crossmap.com, featuring inspiring Bible verses about Though Mountains be Shaken.