Standing on solid rock

Great Ocean Road coastline

Standing on a rock – a cliff really – looking out to sea. It’s wild and beautiful, and cold. The only thing between this cliff and Antarctica is several thousand kilometres of ocean.

And the waves of that ocean lick and bite and crash into those limestone and sandstone cliffs every moment of every day.

Travelling along the Great Ocean Road in Victoria recently, we appreciated the rugged beauty of that coastline. We visited ‘London Bridge’ and the Twelve Apostles, pillars of ocean-sculpted limestone. They are beautiful, but they are no longer what they used to be. Year after year a little more of that limestone succumbs to the wind and the waves, and disappears.

Twelve Apostles, Great Ocean Road

London Bridge, Great Ocean Road

Part of ‘London Bridge’ collapsed years ago, stranding some tourists standing on the remaining section, now separated from the coast. The tourists had to be rescued, but fortunately no one was killed.

Nothing on this earth lasts for ever. Not even rock.

But there is one rock that does last. One rock on which we can stand secure. When we trust in the Lord, no matter what oceans come to beat upon us, God our rock will not be moved. He will uphold us, so that we can stand firm.

Trust in the Lord forever, for the Lord, the Lord himself, is the Rock eternal.
Isaiah 26:4 

When life is a rock and you’re clinging to the side

Milford Sound 2

Fiordland National Park is a stunningly beautiful part of New Zealand. One of the fascinating (and scary) things we learned when visiting Milford Sound was the prevalence of avalanches. There are frequent signs on the road warning drivers not to stop in the avalanche area.

And while snow avalanches and landslides are not a new concept, I discovered that there is also such a thing as a tree avalanche.

There’s not much soil on the mountain slopes and the trees are pretty much clinging to bare rock. The high volume of rain means that it is fairly common for trees to lose their grip on the sheer cliff faces, resulting in tree avalanches that tear ugly wounds in the landscape.

Could it be that life feels a little like that?

Life is stunningly beautiful, but also scary. Sometimes it seems that the difficult events, the tragedies, the crises, the overwhelming daily demands in our lives, may cause us to lose our grip and send us plummeting downward in an avalanche from which there is no return.

Is that what life feels like for you right now? Are you clinging to the side of a rock and praying desperately that you won’t be swept off?

God is whispering to you that he is your Rock. He is your fortress and your refuge.

When you cling to him, he will not let you go.