This is the fourth in a series of nine photovotionals based on the photo prints
of mine which we have hanging on our walls in our home in Brandon, Florida.
The island juts out on the horizon of the ocean near Ixtapa, Mexico. It looks like a giant rock. If you were on a boat that was sinking and were near this island, that’s where you would swim toward. Even the world’s best swimmer can’t stay afloat in the ocean forever and would swim toward that big rock.
We get ourselves in pretty deep in the struggles, temptations, defeats, and challenges of life. In fact, we often feel we’re in over our heads; drowning would be a good metaphor. I heard of a guy who fell into some deep mud up to his ankles. It doesn’t sound bad until you know that he fell in head first! Then, too, I remember the images of the old TV westerns where a guy gets sucked down in quicksand. The psalmist was in such a predicament and penned these words in praise to God: “He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; he set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand.” (Psalm 40:2)
Rock is quite immovable, especially big rocks. We recently started construction on our cottage in Mexico, at Refuge Ranch, the headquarters for the ministry of our daughter and son-in-law. By God’s grace three amigos from Pennsylvania came down to the Ranch, renting some big earth moving equipment here in Mexico, to clear land for the main house for the large family. They also cleared a spot for our small home. Our house will be situated on a narrow rock ridge. It needed to be flattened, which meant moving a lot of big rock. It took the big machines to move rock we could never have moved by human effort. At least our house will be built upon rock!
No wonder Jesus used the imagery of rock to symbolize the effect of building our lives on Him and His teaching. “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock.” (Matthew 7:24)
When our greatest love is for the Lord, our greatest satisfaction is in the Lord, our greatest desire is to please the Lord, and we count most of all on the Lord for help, then we’re living life in the best way possible. It’s the way to live a rock-solid life.
Whenever life becomes a challenge we can do no better than to pray the prayer of the psalmist to the Lord. “Turn your ear to me, come quickly to my rescue; be my rock of refuge, a strong fortress to save me.” (Psalm 31:2)