Reading the scriptures since Shah died, I continually notice that God promises to help us and strengthen us in times of trouble, not to keep us from trouble. He basically promises there will be trouble in this world. This verse is talking about the earth giving way and mountains falling in to the sea. Literal or poetic, it is talking about something devastating and terrifying.
In the last few days, as praise as returned to my lips, it has been with gratitude than even though terrible things happened, my husband died, my friend’s child almost died, I nearly lost a year of life to work and felt like the earth was giving way; God was with me through it all
It’s why I love and bought this picture drawn by an artist friend.
Look at it closely. Guns, death, porn, social media, war, racism, bombing; and then a full glass if wine.
Think about the scripture it represents. Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death . . . He prepares a table before me in the presence of mine enemies. . . . My cup runneth over. Psa 23
God doesn’t promise us we won’t walk through the valley of the shadow of death, but he is with us in that valley and not just with us, he feeds us and pours a full glass of wine. I’ve lived in the valley of the shadow of death. I haven’t always recognized the glass of wine. Other times, I have seen it, but I’ve been too focused on the valley of death to appreciate it, but it has been pour night after night.
This is why I can praise Him in the storm. He has poured the wine. He has been with me in the storm. Pop theology expects God to save us from the evil world we have created.
16 Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. 17 For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. 18 So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal. 2 Cor 4:16-18
This verse makes me pause and catch my breath every time I read it. My first reaction is anger at anyone referring to our troubles as light and momentary. Then I pause and remember the author and the whippings and imprisonments, while his friends were being killed. The verse before mentions wasting away, and it is all in context of persecution.
This verse is the promise that somehow, someway, the horror we experience today, will seem like nothing in light of eternity. This verse is a challenge to keep life in perspective. Now we have wine in the midst of darkness, but someday the darkness will be a distant memory.