“The Lord is my rock, my fortress, and my deliverer,
my God, my rock in whom I take refuge,
my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.”
Psalm 18:1-6 (NRSV)
I visited her in her home, this aging and ageless woman. We sat at the kitchen table. Over coffee she said, “People say I am strong and I am. Most don’t know why.” She chuckled and offered me another cookie. “The insurance documents say I own house, furnishings, car. But, I don’t live by ownership. I live by relationships with all things, including people. Nobody owns me and I don’t own anyone or anything.”
We shared a second cup of coffee as she continued; “This means that I am never a victim of external forces because I don’t allow them to own me. In my years, I’ve known loss, pain, and grief because I am human. From my active role on hot issues, I’ve had death threats and acts of violence against me.” At this point we were silent with no need to have details of violence before she continued; “I live by the basic reality of all our lives, the power of love. For me, this is what the Psalmist means in saying that God is the rock. No other power will do for strength. Of course, I had to learn this truth bit by bit.”
When it was time to go, I left her home a bit stronger myself.
by Art Gafke
As you go about your day, keep your eyes open.
What does “Strength” look like to you?
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