terra.firma

My earliest memories of my dad are fishing trips. He loved to fish, and that love certainly rubbed off on me.

On one occasion, somewhere along some Alabama river, I got bored with watching the bobber and decided that  I was going to go dragonfly hunting. My dad made a really cool rubber-band gun that was perfect for such a job. I happily chased them down, never hitting a single dragonfly. Suddenly I found myself out of rubber-bands.

As I tromped around the brush, hands on hips, pouty lips fully extended, I noticed one of my rubber bands, hanging from a leaf on one of the branches overhanging the river bank. The bank was a steep drop-off about four feet above the heavy, lumbering current.

I determined to get it. I grabbed a small twig with one hand and stretched out over the water with the other hand stretching towards that rubber-band. Without warning the twig broke and I found myself hurling towards the water. I was so scared I could not scream. Just as it seemed I was about to hit the water, I was suddenly yanked back onto my feet, on safe terra firma. My dad, clutching me close to his chest, firmly insisted I never do that again.

17 Unless the LORD had given me help,
I would soon have dwelt in the silence of death.

18 When I said, “My foot is slipping,”
your love, O LORD, supported me.

19 When anxiety was great within me,
your consolation brought joy to my soul.
(Psalm 94:17-19)

Since that time, I’ve stretched over many steep proverbial riverbanks. God has never let me fall. Sometimes the journey towards the current seemed really, really long, and I’ve been really, really scared, but He has never let me fall.

21 thoughts on “terra.firma”

  1. I reckon there have been times I stretched too much to reach “forbidden fruit” because I found myself flat on my back or face. I am just glad that even though I slipped, He was there to pick me up.

    1. Bill, I struggled with whether or not I could honestly post that last line – because like you, I’ve fallen in disobedience. But as I kept re-reading, I’ve come to think this passage is more about walking the edge of peril *in* obedience to His pursuits.

  2. When we are following God, we will face many perils and discomforts, but through it all He is there to comfort and guide us. In those moments, He will shelter us from the fall.

    Thank you for the reminder and the encouragement that when we reach in Him, there is nothing to fear.

    1. TRUE! Your reply makes me think of that song, “Standing On The Promises” – while our foothold might be weak in our circumstance, His promises provide terra-firma. Thanks, Duane.

  3. Yes, He is faithful and true. So glad that He keeps me from destruction and glad that when He asks me to jump by faith He lets me soar. Great words and encouragement. Thanks Herb.

      1. You know every time I receive an e-mail about your comment and I push the wrong link and I’m unsubscribed. I know it’s stupid. I have to be more careful. Bye bye.

          1. I’m glad you can laugh about. Me too. But I don’t want to miss your posts because I love them. So next time I’m more patient. Now really it’s bye bye. 😀

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