More from Julie Ann Brown

February 20, 2018 by Julie Ann Brown (Antrim, Northern Ireland)

It is now a year and a half after the writing of my first meditation for The Upper Room. I hope that it encourages you to trust that God cares about the details of your life, whatever your circumstances may be. It has been two years since I started work in the job that God then provided. During those two years there have been many more lessons on trusting him. I still think about those dusty, well worn, still hanging together sandals on the Israelites’ feet. I think about the manna filling their stomachs and the water spilling out of solid rock to quench their thirst. The books of the Bible are full of stories telling us how God provides for his beloved children, ultimately providing for us in the birth, life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Every ordinary day of this journey with him, I am challenged to put my faith in God and grow in appreciation of the ways in which his loving kindness fills the hours like the rock that pours forth life giving water. In fact, one of the lessons of last year was to remember that God is my Rock.

At the end of the summer, my husband and I celebrated our twentieth wedding anniversary by taking a short break to the island of Jersey, in the Channel Islands just off the North coast of France. One warm morning, we found our way to an intriguing little place called St Matthew’s glass church, so called because the building is full of beautiful frosted glass work and sculpture. As I wandered down the aisles and around the pews, I came across a framed picture on the wall. It is a painting of a person standing on a rock by the sea, their arms thrown up in the air, wide open as the waves crash over and around them. It captured my attention and imagination as it instantly reminded me of a morning earlier in the summer when I had sat on a beach watching the waves crash into a rocky outcrop near where children were playing. I wrote a blog post about it at the time, about God being our Rock, about how he is our shelter, and our refuge, about how he is the solid bulwark that protects us from the power of the waves of life that would drown us. So you can understand how the fearless figure in the painting now held my attention.

When we returned home from our trip, my sister presented me with an unexpected gift which she had made for me some time before my trip to Jersey. I opened the wrapping and to my great astonishment, I lifted out a piece of glass craft fused with an identical image of a person standing on a rock with arms wide open surrounded by the sea and the words, ‘This is God, my Rock’ inscribed on it.

God speaks to us in ways that we can never anticipate. He never fails to amaze me. He knows exactly what we need and when we need it. Three times, in three different ways, he told me that he is my Rock.

When we focus on the One in whom we can trust, our fears and anxieties begin to have less of a hold on us. Their grip is loosened and we begin to experience what it is to live in the freedom that only God’s love can bring.

‘Truly he is my rock and my salvation;’ Psalm 62:2 (NIV)


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The Upper Room magazine's mission is to provide a practical way to listen to scripture, connect with believers around the world, and spend time with God each day.

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