This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, a hope both sure and steadfast and one which enters within the veil.
– Hebrews 6:19
The fishing vessel lunged toward the sky upon a heaving wave and careened down its black back as the herculean storm roiled the ocean beneath them.
Rain pounded against the ship’s wheelhouse windows. Inside, the lights of the navigational instruments were small comfort to the exhausted captain. The hurricane was getting the best of them. How he wished he’d heeded the weather warnings and stayed in the harbor.
The captain wiped his face, grabbed the intercom, and flipped the toggle switch on. “Shut ‘er down, boys, and head inside. We’re running for cover.”
The men gladly pushed the last crab pot into its place on the deck, lashed it to the others, and waddled awkwardly into shelter. The captain set a course for the back side of one of the nearby islands, where the land offered some protection against the storm. There he dropped anchor so the waves wouldn’t dash the ship against the rocky beach during the night. They collapsed into a restless sleep in their bunks until the morning brought calm again to their world.
Last night I lay in bed, exhausted from another long day of caregiving. But sleep would not come. The many hardships which have marked our journey these last two years pounded against my soul. I prayed over and over again for God’s mercy, for rescue, for some kind of help.
In answer, just a few words came to me: O afflicted one, storm-tossed, and not comforted.
What? Was that a verse from the Bible?
I couldn’t remember, but it must be. It was as if God was telling me He knew exactly how I felt. But that couldn’t be all the Scripture verse. What was the rest of it?
I couldn’t recall, so I threw an anchor into that harbor, comforted even in knowing that God saw us and our pain. In the storm, in the night, that was enough.
This afternoon we received an answer to one of those desperate prayers.
Amazed, I looked up the words that had come in the night and discovered they were, indeed, part of a verse from Isaiah:
O afflicted one, storm-tossed, and not comforted,
Behold, I will set your stones in antimony,
And your foundations I will lay in sapphires.
– Isaiah 54:11
There it was, the promise profound. Although we ride the storms of life, the voyage is taking us somewhere. We will arrive safely at the new Jerusalem. Each tortured mile of the journey may feel pointless at times but is bringing us ever closer to the eternal city.
Antimony is a metalloid that resists heat, securing the foundation of our faith from the flames of trial. The precious stones speak of the riches of the Builder and His love for the Bride for whom He has built it.
Beautiful, solid, and eternal. Through His sacrifice, death, and resurrection, Jesus Christ has secured a future for us that will never grow old or die. In the meantime, He reminds us He knows what we are enduring, and He cares that we are hurting.
Harbor hope always. Seek Him constantly. Anchor your soul to His promises.
I’m here, in the morning, to tell you God answers prayers.