There is a river, the streams whereof make glad the city of God, the dwelling place of the Most High. God is in the midst of her, she shall not be moved; God will help her at the break of day. Psalm 46:4
This is one of my favorite verses. (I have about a thousand or so.) I love it for the poetry in it, the beauty of the language. Something so soothing, so reassuring in its words, in its promise, even in its cadence.
Every river has a story
It was around 700 BC and Jerusalem was under siege. The mighty Assyrian army had encircled the city and cut off all supplies and communications going in and out. The Assyrians believed the city’s inhabitants would soon open the gates and surrender for lack of water.
The Assyrians, however, were unaware of “Hezekiah’s tunnel,” a hidden, underground source of water that sustained the citizens of Jerusalem throughout the siege.
It is a beautiful illustration of the hidden resource available to the people of God, a picture of that unseen Hand that holds the weary hand, steadies the wobbling knees, and sustains the weary warrior.
Satan and his forces may do their dead level best. They may succeed in isolating you from friends and family. They may successfully cut off supply lines. They may wait like vultures for you to crumble beneath the weight of the siege on your soul.
There is a river!
It’s source is unseen to the enemy’s eyes. It’s flow is unstopped by the enemy’s efforts.
More than 2700 years have elapsed since the Psalmist recorded this magnificent verse, but it is as refreshing and full of hope today as it has ever been.
I am a catastrophe adjuster by trade (but a preacher by heart).
I have seen the winds rip roofs from houses and send trees crashing into houses. I have seen the surge of the ocean tide, driven by the gale force winds of a hurricane wash away homes and businesses…and entire communities. I have seen the raging rivers overflow their banks and wreak havoc on homes and lives. I have seen the weight of snow collapse roofs. I have seen the burned-out remains of a home struck by lightning.
I have seen people struggle to pick up the pieces of their lives. I have seen them mourn the loss of their loved ones.
There is, in this world, trouble of the natural and the unnatural sort. There is pain. There is conflict. There is loss.
Every story has a river
Whatever your story, your storm, may be–whether it rolled in like Atilla’s forces from the Atlantic or stumbled home from work, drunk again; whether it blew across the plains toward your home and hearth or was as simple as the ringing of your phone and a subdued voice on the other end, breaking the bad news to you; whether its flood waters filled your house with water or its sudden pain emptied your eyes of their water−there is a river.
It is a river of hope.
It is a river of help.
It is a river of comfort.
It is a river that soothes, that sustains, that stays.
It is the river of God.
When the storm is past and the sun at last rises on a new day, as it inevitably does, God will help us at the break of day, having seen us through the dark of night.