If the LORD had not been on our side when men attacked us, when their anger flared against us, they would have swallowed us alive; the flood would have engulfed us, the torrent would have swept over us, the raging waters would have swept us away.
What would your life be — without the Lord?
There’s the obvious. Lost. Unforgiven. Destined to pay the penalty for sin.
But let’s dig a little deeper. Consider your personal history from birth until today. Where would you be if not for the Lord’s help and guidance?
Our focus text recalls God’s help for the nation, Israel. David calls upon his people to look back and consider what might have happened if God had not been on their side. Swallowed alive by an angry enemy. Engulfed by flood waters. Swept away by raging waters. In other words, without the Lord, they would not have survived.
Life is filled with hardship and challenges. Some seemingly insurmountable. What would have happened had the Lord not been with you in your times of crisis?
December 14, 1958. My mother was away, worked the night shift at the Virginia Restaurant in my hometown of Strasburg. I was at home with my dad, and he told me he felt sick. Asked if I would prepare toast. Maybe he just needed to eat something. But his condition rapidly deteriorated. So I called Mom, and she summoned an ambulance. As the paramedics tended to him, I went in my bedroom and prayed for the Lord’s help. It’s my first recollection of fervent prayer.
A family friend stayed with me until my grandparents picked me up. She tried to comfort me by telling me my dad would be okay and rebuked me when I told her “he’s not going to make it.”
Early the next morning I was awakened by the sound of the phone ringing. Soon after, my grandmother called for me to come downstairs. “I’ve got bad news. Your daddy died.”
Four years later, March 6, 1962, we experienced one of the biggest snowstorms in Virginia history. Mom’s boss called, asked if she could make it into work. She said she’d try. I helped her shovel snow from the driveway, and she made it safely to the restaurant.
Next morning, we were in the kitchen. She cleared dishes from the breakfast table and carried them to the sink. Then she began to cry uncontrollably, called out for help, and fell to the floor.
I tried to carry her to the sofa, but couldn’t. Called a neighbor, a retired nurse. Again an ambulance was called. Later we learned she suffered a stroke, so severe she lost all motor skills.
My dad was gone, and my mother could not care for me. But the Lord was by my side. He provided a home with my grandparents where I was loved and cared for.
In May 1984, my mother called from a hospital in Alexandria, Virginia. She had been taken there from her nursing home, and she was crying. Doctors told her she didn’t have long to live. In our brief conversation, I asked her a question. “Do you know for certain you will go to heaven when you die?”
She said, “I hope so.”
“But Mom, you can know so.” (1 John 5:13)
I flew to Washington and spent a few days with her. Shared the plan of salvation, and she prayed to receive Christ. That was the last time I saw her. But one day, we will meet again in God’s heaven.
In these situations, and so many more the Lord has been on my side. Where would I be without the Lord?
If not for the Lord where would you be today? How has He helped you?
Jesus told the Apostle Paul, “My grace is sufficient…” (2 Corinthians 12:9) Amen.
For more on this topic, check out this article: Where to Find Peace for All of Life’s Storms
Reprinted from The Forever Notebook, Book 4 (October – December) Get your copy here: Paperback and eBook/Kindle formats.