A letter I once received from the Ministries Director of Campus Crusade for Christ concerning the organization’s relief work among tsunami victims in Thailand related the following experience of a staff member serving there:
“As I was walking through the destroyed town two days ago I noticed an injured man cleaning up debris from a small shop. After I approached him and said Hi, I asked him how he was doing. Just that simple question produced tears in his eyes.
“He began to tell me that he was an owner of a mini grocery store. Just before the tsunami hit, he was talking with his older sister who helped out with the store. They both looked out the window and saw a great wall of water coming. She yelled out to him, ‘hold me, you know I can’t swim, Hold me, Hold me!’”
The concerned brother assured his sister he would hold and protect her but when the wave hit it was so strong that he was unable to keep his promise. He was then swept 800 meters away by the wave and when the water receded it took him an hour to return to his store. Upon arriving there he found exactly what he feared: his sister lay dead pressed up against the wall.
At this point of the story, the grieving brother began to sob almost uncontrollably, moving the relief worker to take him in his arms, hold him as firmly as possible and pray for him. After his prayer, he comforted this tearful one, saying no one in the world would have been able to hold onto his sister’s hand under the force of the tsunami, adding, “…but now if you trust in God, He will never let go of you!”
Is this true?
Does God hold securely those who trust Him? Yes.
Even in storms, when wind and waves threaten to bring them down? Especially then.
During World War II, my friend Charles Krieger was captured by Nazi troops and held as a prisoner of war. When allied forces began bombing the area where he was imprisoned, he found himself in double jeopardy. His life was in the hands of his captors but as friendly forces increased their attacks he was also in danger of being killed by those trying to set him free. While living through those precarious conditions, he settled on a Bible verse to bring him peace: “Cast thy burden upon the Lord and He shall sustain thee” (Psalm 55:22), which reminded him that though he was being held captive by his enemies he was held securely in the hands of his Lord.
Time after time, I have been amazed at the strength of those going through severe trials because they knew they weren’t traveling alone. No matter what the future held they rested peacefully in knowing the one who holds the future and believed He held them safely in His hands.
The Psalmist said in trembling times, when it seemed his strength was nearly gone and his feet were slipping that the Lord had rescued him, given him new strength and held him up (Psalm 94:18).
When you feel overwhelmed and need someone to hold you, remember God cares and will respond to your call. He’ll hold you fast and never let you fall.
Roger Campbell was an author, broadcaster and columnist who was a pastor for 22 years. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org