Tuesday, March 06, 2012

CP 166 A handy friend to have...

CP 166 A handy friend to have…

Just this morning I found myself looking at my childhood home in floodwater up to its windows. The ABC helicopter was flying over the suburb of North Wagga Wagga where rising water had gone way over the top of the levee. Just across the road, in the river flats, the water would have been at least 5 metres deep. As I reflected about this I recalled an incident when I was about 8 years old which frightened me greatly.

The short-cut home from school was through those river flats. We always used it except when it rained. One sunny day on my way home a very unkempt / unwashed swaggie, swaying, beer bottle in hand, suddenly appeared from behind a big gum (eucalypt) beside the track. He was a forbidding sight but I nearly cacked myself when he ran towards me and said, “I’m going to get you.” I raced off to the side and around him and fled home. For at least a week after that I wasn’t game to go anywhere near that place.

The following Saturday evening Dad wanted to go into town for a Saturday evening church service… through the river flats. I went with him, not without a fast-beating heart. My thoughts were about that tree where the swaggie had appeared. I stuck my hand in his hand for security, and got a surprise. The moment my hand was within his hand all the fear disappeared!

Just over a year ago a young person of my acquaintance sent me an email with the piece below. It captures the same thought beautifully.

“A little girl and her father were crossing a bridge over a fast flowing stream. The father was conscious of the danger so he asked his little daughter: 'Sweetheart, please hold onto my hand so that you don't fall into the river.' The little girl said: 'No Dad, you hold MY hand.' What's the difference?' asked the puzzled father. 'There's a big difference,' replied the little girl. 'If I hold your hand and something happens to me, chances are that I may let your hand go. But if you hold my hand, I know for sure that no matter what happens, you will never let my hand go.'”

Do you remember the song, “Put your hand in the hand of the man who stilled the water…”?
Then there is that Word of the Lord, “Don’t you know that I’ve engraved you in the palm of my hand…?”
Or another, “I am convinced that nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God which is ours through Christ Jesus our Lord.”

There you are! Onward, ever onward, with assurance based on the resurrection! Jesus is the Father’s hand, holding on to you with strength and affection.

Have a ‘blessed in Christ’ week.

Fred

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