The Message in the Rubble

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It was a couple of days after the tornadoes ravaged and rocked our North Alabama world, when my friends were cleaning up the one tree that had fallen on their property near Huntsville. It actually was rooted on another lot, but fell toward their house and thus lost some major branches on both sides of the fence. Anyone in the vicinity who had damage that minimal was extremely blessed and was quick to give thanks. It had been a rough week for many families we know.

The interesting thing about this particular small clean-up operation was the one piece of paper “litter” that my friends noticed lying among the broken branches. They picked it up and read the words inscribed in the middle of the tattered card. There were only eight words, but they spoke volumes in the silence as they paused in disbelief. The dirty card only said, “Be still and know that I am God.” 

There’s just no telling how many miles the little card had traveled, from whose home it was lifted, for whom it was originally intended, or under what circumstance it had expressed it’s powerful and comforting message before. But now it had come to await those who would be cleaning up the debris deposited by a storm system that left the state of Alabama powerless (in more ways than one).

Sometimes people have mentioned to me that they have received a message from God. When people tell me about messages that have come to them in dreams or on mysterious notes or in still small voices—messages that contain extra-Biblical information, I know that these people are mistaken. God has emphasized that the scriptures contain His final and complete revelation (II Tim. 3:16).  But it struck me that these friends, in this rubble, really did pick up a tattered card that contained a message from God. In fact, he first spoke the words through the psalmist in Psalms 46:10.  Oh, it wasn’t the first time they had heard this message, but its repetition on that day offered comfort and hope on a very dismal day.

It was simply very strong winds that carried this message from the calmness of point A, through the chaos of the journey, and finally, to the once again serene resting place of point B. If we will carry this little message with us through the chaos and storms of life, we too, will come to a resting place where we will rest and serenely reflect. We will be more certain than ever before that He is God and, as the very next verse tells us, that the Lord of hosts is with us and He is our refuge.

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