Dec. 21: And the sky opened up
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This past summer, I trained for and ran my very first marathon. I can still recall one particular training run that happened to be especially torturous. I was running after church on a sweltering August afternoon, and had completed about one quarter of my 17-mile run when a sharp pain began to shoot through my right hip. Determined to press on, I continued to run in a state of hot, painful misery.
Suddenly, without warning, the sky opened up, and I was drenched in an absolute downpour. The pain in my hip increased to an excruciating level, and my gimpy jog slowed to a walk that stung my pride right alongside my hip. The rain eventually slowed to a drizzle, finally ceasing.
Then, just as suddenly as before, the sky opened up once again. This time, however, the clouds released not rain, but sunshine so bright that my breath caught in my throat – its effect on the clouds was magnificent. It was as if the entire sky was a canvas covered in paint. The scene was simply unreal.
In that very moment, I felt God’s presence with overwhelming strength. I sensed a promise, as if God was telling me, “Lynelle, whenever you feel painfully alone, I will always be at your side. I will carry you every step of the way.”
It is this promise that God has given to each of us. God’s presence will always save us. Just as God did with the house of Israel, God will lift each of us up and carry us in the arms of mercy. God’s steadfast love endures forever. Hallelujah!
SCRIPTURE: Isaiah 63:7-9 (NRSV)