We moved to the Netherlands from Japan. If I didn't know from experience that we would have a wonderful adventure in Europe, I would have refused to leave our dear adopted country. We loved everything about the Japanese land and culture: the people, the food, our church, our kids' school, the beauty. I could go on.
So naturally I was devastated by the news of the massive earthquake, and subsequent tsunami, aftershocks, and nuclear plant crisis. I worried for our friends, and I ached for strangers.
Thankfully, all of our friends are fine. But with every day that brings news of people still trapped, of possible radiation leaks, of threats of more devastation, my heart breaks a little more.
And then, this morning, I went to do my small group study and realized I had already finished it for the week. I'm not good at picking something from the Bible to read on my own. So I sat for a minute, and then I heard God tell me to read Psalm 46. It says:
God is our strong refuge; He is truly our helper in times of trouble.
For this reason we do not fear when the earth shakes, and the mountains tumble into the depths of the sea, when its waves crash and foam, and the mountains shake before the surging sea. The river's channels bring joy to the city of God, the special, holy dwelling place of the Sovereign One.
God lives within it, it cannot be moved. God rescues it at the break of dawn. Nations are in uproar, kingdoms are overthrown. God gives a shout, the earth dissolves. The Lord who commands armies is on our side! The God of Jacob is our protector! Come! Witness the exploits of the Lord, who brings devastation to the earth. He brings an end to wars throughout the earth; He shatters the bow and breaks the spear; He burns the shields with fire.
He says, "Be still and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations; I will be exalted over the earth. The Lord who commands his armies is on our side! The God of Jacob is our protector!
I wept and prayed. I continue to weep in my heart, because some do not know. Some have not heard. But I rejoice at the words of authority, and I faithfully pray that through the devastation, people will find their strong refuge in our God.