Whether by day while working away With the heat of the sun overhead Or the pit of despair In the darkness and gloom With lightening crashing down everywhere
Still He's holding my hand As God walks by my side And Jesus fills me with His peace
He's our shelter in storms By His grace and His power And our refuge in darkness and night He's a friend who stays true As He leads us all through To His Heaven and a placed filled with light
I loved the peace of this violin rendition of In Christ Alone by Stuart Townend and Keith Getty. For those unfamiliar with the lyrics here is the first verse.
In Christ alone my hope is found He is my light, my strength, my song This cornerstone, this solid ground Firm through the fiercest drought and storm What heights of love, what depths of peace When fears are stilled, when strivings cease My comforter, my all in all Here, in the love of Christ, I stand
For the which cause I also suffer these things: nevertheless I am not ashamed: for I know whom I have believed and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day 2 Timothy 1:12 KJV
In this letter, Paul wrote to his dearest friend on earth, Timothy, while He was facing almost certain execution. Paul had been in and out of prisons for years and was growing old and maybe a little worn out. The false teachers trying to manipulate the church for financial gain, as well as the hypocritical religious leaders trying to have him killed finally seemed to have him where they wanted him. Yet Paul was able to say with confidence that no matter what, he was not going to be ashamed. Why? Because He knows Jesus and trusts that Jesus will take care both of him and of the things that Paul had been working to do. Isn’t it interesting how a few years earlier in Paul’s letter to the Philippian church, he said that He wanted to know Christ more. Now it appears that God has granted Paul his desire, and he could say, “I’m not worried any more. Jesus has got this! He will take care of me and He will take care of the church when I am gone. He will bring everything to pass that he has promised and I can rest in Him. I know Him and I also know that the day is coming when He will come and make everything right!”
One day each of us will also face the end of our life. Though right at this moment we may wish we knew Christ better, we can draw courage from today’s verse that if we trust Him completely then on that day He will help us to know Him just as Paul did. Jesus will take over and keep everything we have put in His hands and then He will take our hand and lead us until that day!
We used to sing the hymn with these words and though the melody is old fashioned, the words never go out of style. I pray each of you to know Him fully and to trust Jesus until that day! Have a blessed week.!
The angel of the Lord encamps around those who fear him, and delivers them. Psalm 37:4 ESV
You need to know that I have never seen an angel, but I believe in them. Yet the entire concept of angels seems pretty strange to me. Why would an all powerful God who can command light into existence and who holds every atom in the universe together by the power of His word, want to use angels to do stuff? And yet, the Bible tells us that, God chooses to employ angels to take care of us.
When our kids were still in diapers and credit cards were only issued to folks who didn’t need them we struggled financially. Though we had enough to pay for our groceries, rent and the electric bill, by the end of the month, there was nothing left over. Each morning as I got the car, glanced at the front tires, which were daily growing balder, I breathed another prayer and put the key in the ignition. Every afternoon when I pulled back up into our parking spot, I racked my brain trying to figure how we could squeeze a few dollars together, then put it out of my mind, picked up my lunch box and trudged back up the stairs to our apartment.
Though we didn’t have much mullah, we did have plenty of friends. One of those was a confirmed bachelor named Bob and my wife insisted that we invite him over for dinner at least once a week. She worried that otherwise he would never eat a decent meal. Bob became like an uncle to our boys and they loved nothing better than running full speed and jumping onto his lap unexpectedly, then laughing hysterically as he let out a loud groan. Regularly, Bob would remind me about those tires, and regularly I would tell him that we would get to it next month. But whether it was an unexpected doctor’s visit or a new pair of shoes for our growing boys, it seemed “next month” never came.
All the time I worried about those bald tires I never once thought about praying for new ones. Not that I doubted God, but it simply never occurred to me to trouble the almighty with mundane issues like tread wear. He probably had important stuff to do like taking care of orphans in Africa or rescuing beggars in India. But one day I discovered that God isn’t too busy to notice even the tiniest problem we face while He is taking care of folks with bigger issues. He sends angels to camp out around us, to help in every struggle we face.
It was a Sunday morning and just as always we scrubbed up the boys and squeezed them into their church clothes then headed off for the 11 AM service. I put my worry about the tires into the back of my mind convinced I could only pray about life threatening issues. Yes I know I should have prayed but I am glad that our Father in Heaven doesn’t always do things according to formula. I have no idea what our pastor preached that morning, but engraved forever in my mind was the miracle of two brand new tires sitting at the top of our stairs on our return. Yes our angel that day actually was named Bob, but I’m pretty sure that he was enlisted into the service of the ones with wings. What was best of all was the astonishingly wonderful discovery that God knew and cared and sent angels to take care of every detail like stubbing our toe or getting a flat. God wanted me to know that whether He was washing my dirty feet, leaving tires on our stairs or dying on the cross for my sins, that He loves us all completely, in every detail and forever!
Two Tires On the Stairs by Peter Caligiuri copyright 2021 Use by permission only, all rights reserved.