This post has been written to link with Five Minute Friday: write for five minutes on a one word prompt. The prompt today is “steady.”
Steady: “firmly fixed, supported, or balanced; not shaking or moving” (Oxford English Dictionary)
As I look at our nation that is not the first word that comes to mind.
In a time of political instability, division over Brexit, debate around the possibility of a second Scottish independence referendum, and all of the uncertainty over the future that these things cause, the word that comes to mind is turbulent.
Add into the mix four terrorist attacks in the last three months, as well as a fire in a tower block which killed at least 79 people, and the general mood is one of mourning, anger and fear.
Nothing feels very steady, and it’s easy to let the fear take hold. Just this week there was panic at a local hospital over a suspicious-looking person. It turned out to be nothing to worry about, but initial reports on social media suggested it was a gunman, and the sad thing is that it no longer seemed hard to believe.
Last weekend I attended a large youth event for teenagers, knowing that I was the person who had to take charge in the event of an emergency. It passed without incident, but in the hour before the event all kinds of disaster scenarios began running through my mind.
Paul urges Timothy, “But as for you, be clear-headed in every situation [stay calm and cool and steady]” (2 Timothy 4:5 AMP)
This is how we’re called to be as Christians, but how can we be steady in the midst of such turmoil? How is that even possible?
I found a verse in Numbers that helped me think about this:
“Moses made a serpent of bronze and put it on a pole, and if a serpent had bitten any man, when he looked to the serpent of bronze [attentively, expectantly, with a steady and absorbing gaze], he lived.” (Numbers 21:9 AMP)
In John’s Gospel, the bronze serpent lifted up on the pole is likened to Christ being lifted up on the cross- all who look to him will live.
But I love the description of how we are to look at him: “attentively, expectantly, with a steady and absorbing gaze.”
It’s not just a quick glance now and then. We are to fix our eyes on him, place our trust in him and look to him for our hope.
Only then can we be steady.
Friends, I probably won’t have time to read many of your posts today, but I look forward to catching up later on tomorrow or on Sunday.