I rise before dawn and cry for help;
I have put my hope in your word.
My eyes stay open through the watches of the night,
that I may meditate on your promises.
Hear my voice in accordance with your love;
preserve my life, Lord, according to your laws.
A few weeks ago, when we should have been sleeping, my husband and I were whispering in the dark. My faith was faltering. The darkness and pain in the world around us and the persistent sin in my own heart made the foundations we had built our world upon feel like a myth. When another faith leader falls to scandal, who can be trusted? When differences of opinion rip apart the Church, where is the unity that Christ prayed and died for? When a mainstay of Christian practice becomes open to interpretation, what truth can I cling to? When I can’t demonstrate the fruit of the Spirit before the people I love most, what regeneration can I claim? I felt hopeless and mired in disillusionment.
I woke up early the next morning to seize the few moments of quiet before the mad morning dash to school and daycare and work. I stared, half awake, at the cover of my Bible. What do I read when I don’t know what I believe? Where do I go?
The answer came quiet and sure. To Jesus.
To the Jesus we read about in Luke—whose fierce compassion had rekindled my love and loyalty just last winter. To the Friend who sat near enough to hold my grief and fear on my darkest days. To the King who holds all things together. If he is still on his throne, then hope is still winning, no matter what mountains are crumbling. If he is still holding me, then I am secure, no matter how weak my own grip has become.
So I went back to the book of Luke that morning, desperate for the simplest of truth. And the next day, and the next. Have mercy. Meet me here. Show me Jesus.
And God did, because he is faithful and unchangingly good. He has proven himself again and again throughout Scripture, weaving a story of redemption as soon as the curse of sin was uttered. In Genesis 3:15, God drops a hint of hope right into the curse itself. The history of Israel in the Old Testament is a long-running testimony of God’s faithfulness to keep his promises, as Joshua reminds the Israelites: “You know with all your heart and soul that not one of all the good promises the LORD your God gave you has failed. Every promise has been fulfilled; not one has failed.” Promises made and kept in scripture are the first handhold I reach for when my faith is starting to slip.
And he has proven himself in my own life as well. I can look back at the mental monuments I have set up for times when hope is hard to see: Remember this unmistakable answer to prayer. Remember this rescued soul who seemed beyond reach. Remember this bleak situation that has been redeemed. These snapshots also help guide my feet back to solid ground.
Where do you go when you feel the ground crumbling under your feet? I hope it’s to the Jesus of the Bible. I hope you are able to hide in the fortress of his promises and find the lights of his past faithfulness until the dawn comes.
King of Heaven, thank you for the rock of your faithfulness, a firm and steady place for me to stand. May the reminders of your goodness, both in Scripture and in my life, be my strength today.
- Joshua 4
- Joshua 23
- Psalm 91
- Which of God’s promises in Scripture are the most powerful for me?
- Where have I seen God’s faithfulness, mercy, and strength in my own life?
- God gave the Israelites instructions for festivals and monuments and regular patterns of life so they would remember His love for them. What reminders can I build into my life so that I am armed with truth when the road is rough?
He Will Hold Me Fast (Shane & Shane)
Micah Pitner is a wife, mom, and water resources engineer. She loves Jesus and going outside. Her kids and her hair are usually not quite under control.
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