Sunday, May 27, 2012

Message we shared at Waterloo Mennonite Brethren, our home church, this morning

On Christ, the solid rock I stand, all other ground is sinking sand.  From the moment I answered my cell phone in the store, and my knees buckled beneath me when I received the news that our daughter, Lydia had been hit by a recycling truck when getting off the school bus, I have called out to Jesus to be with us in this storm.  He has beautifully and abundantly shone himself to us.  From the provision of the hands of a trusted friend and former small group member, picking me up from the floor of the store and driving me to the hospital to meet the ambulance, to all of the preparatory work in our hearts from years of following and loving Jesus, He has been our refuge and our strength.  He has knit James and I tightly together, to endure this storm together, trusting in Him and surrendering to Him. 

He speaks to us through the words of scripture:

Isaiah 43:1-3
But now, this is what the Lord says—
he who created you, Jacob,
he who formed you, Israel:
"Do not fear, for I have redeemed you;
I have summoned you by name; you are mine.
2 When you pass through the waters,
I will be with you;
and when you pass through the rivers,
they will not sweep over you.
When you walk through the fire,
you will not be burned;
the flames will not set you ablaze.
3 For I am the Lord your God,
the Holy One of Israel, your Savior;

He fills our hearts with songs and praise - songs with lyrics that lift our eyes to the mountains, that extol Him as the Faithful One, that proclaim his love and his healing power.  We often sing over Lydia, in the hospital.  We take comfort in Zephaniah 3:17 - "The Lord your God is with you, He is mighty to save.  He will take great delight in you, ... He will rejoice over you with singing."

The presence of the Jesus is a comfort and guide to us.  He speaks to us in prayer.  He surrounds us with His love.  It says in the Psalms that "the Lord is close to the broken hearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit".  Jesus, himself, was "a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief".  He knows our pain and walks through this storm with us.

The power of the Holy Spirit to comfort us and guide us in truth, as we rely on Him, has been an overwhelming experience.  James and I have talked about the peace that passes understanding, and it is marvellous to behold.  He is sustaining us, providing for us, speaking words of love, hope and promise to us.  He is sheltering us in the shadow of his wings.  Psalm 63:7-8  "Because you are my help, I sing in the shadow of your wings.  I cling to you; your right hand upholds me."

On Christ, the solid rock we stand, and we trust the divine physician for His healing.  We appreciate all of your prayers for our family, and for Lydia, and we ask you to continue.  The doctors have told us that this will be a long haul.  Malachi 4:3 has been given to us: "But for you who revere my name, the sun of righteousness will rise with healing in its rays".  We look to the Lord for healing.  We also look to Him for comfort, hope and peace.  And he abundantly and tenderly provides.  Let us worship him together this morning.  On Christ, the solid rock we stand - together.