You can’t cross the sea merely by staring at the water. – Rabindranath Tagore
Reading some of David’s psalms is like walking in the woods, alone (even when you have company). It is dark and cold. Chilled to the bones with fear. Every little sound- a breaking twig, a mouse’s little feet rustling by, a snake slithering in the grass. It can easily put one on edge. You feel like you’re being followed. Someone could stab you in the back and leave you to death. You keep walking and hear water running, a little stream flowing over rocks, making music. Thirsty. You notice sunlight streaming through the trees, warm and comforting, like little stars glinting on the water. You stop, scoop cool water to drink. You see dragonflies hovering over the water. Lots of them. Butterflies everywhere. You hear birds calling to one another. Fear subsides. You sit down on the side, put your feet in the water, and breathe. Now you feel gentle breeze soothing your being. You lean back on your hands, close your eyes and exhale. You’re okay. You’re not alone.
Why do you care, God? What is so special about a human being that you are mindful of? Why do you bother with us? Why take a second look in our way? When I see millions and millions of stars in the night sky, I realize how itsy-bitsy I am. Like a speck of dust in the universe. Yet you care for us whether we know you or not. Whether we believe you or not. You make the sun shines on the good and the bad. You are a wild God. Yet you love us! Richard Rohr writes, “God cannot be known by thinking but by experiencing and loving.” I believe that. Brennan Manning says, “We encounter God to impact change in our lives”… Some call it “Our Road to Damascus”. Until we have an understanding of our inherent value, a precious creation of God, we will continue to devalue ourselves and others.
The Message (A Bible in contemporary language) is easy for me to comprehend. His translation triggers my imaginations to see what I can’t see. In Psalms 18, God is Beduk ra D’molch. God, our bedrock, a castle on the hill in which we live. A knight in a shining armor who rescues us when in distress. He is the cliff where we hide, a boulder to shelter us, a crag we hold on to to climb up to safety.
We all go through difficult times – living from hand to mouth, a kid gets sick, loss of loved one, and custom drowning us. One thing I know is – God doesn’t remove our suffering. He doesn’t deposit thousands of dollars in our bank account. He gives us our daily bread. He is our bedrock. He doesn’t pull us out from a deep unquiet sea, he provides a bedrock to stand on, to keep our head above the water. To rest and regain our strength and swim to the other side. He is the gentle breeze that feels like light when dawn is still dark.
“He hideth my life in the depth of his love and covers me there with his hand…” Franny Crosby