Safe Place with Ruth Graham

About 4 years ago, we had an earthquake in my area of Virginia. When the ground begins to shake you understand uncertainty in a whole new way!

Life is uncertain – to put it mildly. Especially these days. The stock market is up and down like a rollercoaster – can’t be certain about that! Politicians lie with ease – can’t trust them. People going about their normal day are shot randomly by terrorists – don’t feel safe. Governments are teetering on the brink of disaster – can’t depend on them. Family members die unexpectedly. We are being told by some to stock up on water and canned goods for the soon-coming disaster. Life is uncertain. Otherwise we wouldn’t need insurance!

We try to insure against uncertainty so we will feel more secure. But there really is no insurance for life. Yes. We can buy “life insurance” but it only pays out if you die! So maybe it is misnamed – call it “death insurance”. But there is nothing that can protect us from death itself. God says “It is appointed unto man once to die and after this the judgment.” We will all die. The mortality rate for each generation is 100%.

So what are we to do? We look for a rock, a shelter, a stronghold. We look for safety in something or someone. But we find nothing is guaranteed. The Psalmist calls God his “rock”, “shelter”, “stronghold”. He learned it from his life experience. David knew betrayal, assassination attempts, he fled for this life more than once, was attacked by a lion. He was  cursed by others and slandered. He felt loneliness, hunger, thirst. He slept in caves. He was in battle many times. He faced down a giant. David knew all about uncertainty.

And what did He say? “God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.” (Ps. 46:1) “We wait in hope for the Lord; he is our help and our shield.” (Ps.33:20) “In the shelter of your presence you hide them from intrigues of men; in your dwelling you keep them safe from accusing tongues.” (Ps. 31:20) “The is faithful to all his promises and loving toward all he has made. The Lord upholds all those who fall and lifts up all who are bowed down.” (Ps. 145:13-14)

Now, you go through the Psalms and find your own verses! (Start with Psalm 23.) It will be such faith building exercise!

How far down do we have to go until we feel the wrath of God because of our disregard for the life of the unborn? I’m talking about the culture where baby parts are harvested and sold for huge sums of money. Actions one with purpose and callousness.  It is not someone’s imagination or wild story to whip up public opinion – there is documentation that this activity is real – happening in our country today under the auspices of Planned Parenthood funded with our tax dollars.

It is to be condemned as abhorrent on every level. We will answer to God for this.  The  folks responsible should be held accountable for this heinous activity. I don’t care whether you area Republican or Democrat – this is hideous. It is sin – pure and simple. There is no gray area here.

It’s inhuman. There is no justifiable reason for it – NONE! We used to live in a civilized country. We used to be God-fearing. We used to call people who did such things “savages”. These people are savages.   To pick over an aborted fetus with tweezers in order to find the most profitable parts is unspeakable. What kind of person does such a thing?

I’m not talking about those who have had abortions. I have said many  times and stand by what I have said – that for those broken by their choice to abort a child, there is forgiveness, healing and forgiveness. There is hope. But this is something different.

This is a total callous disregard for the sanctity of life. Every life is sacred. We are made in God’s image for a purpose. Each unborn child has the stamp and fingerprints of God on it. We are tampering with God’s Holy creation. Each life is important and each life matters.

I must admit, I am stunned and disgusted. Please God, forgive us… Or have we gone too far? Judgment is at the door.

President Obama announced a negotiated deal concerning its nuclear arms with Iran this AM.

With my mind spinning I sat down to spend time with the Lord. As is my custom, I sing a hymn each day…this morning I sang, “May Jesus Christ Be Praised”.

“Does sadness fill my mind? A solace here I find, May Jesus Christ be praised! Or flees my earthy bliss? My comfort still is this; May Jesus Christ be praised! Ye nations of mankind, in this your comfort find, May Jesus Christ be praised.The powers of darkness fear when this sweet chant they hear, May Jesus Christ be praised!”

God is in control and He will have the last word. It matters little what takes place in Vienna or Washington or Tehran. Let’s keep our eyes focused on Jerusalem and pray for her peace – as we are commanded to do. This could very well usher in the return of Christ. Exciting time to live. And if He does soon return may I be found praising Jesus and if He tarries may I still be praising Him.

I imagine all those in Heaven are worshipping and praising the only One who has given us a legacy of peace – true peace. Let’s join our voices to theirs.

And remember the title of my book: Fear Not Tomorrow, God is Already There. That is rock solid truth.

My car is old – 13 years old…216,000 miles old…it has a cassette player old…. Things are beginning to break down. For instance my CD player is broken. I loved to listen to audio books as I trek up and down the Interstate but my player eats the CDs. I did finally discover that if one got stuck and I pushed eject and grabbed the CD with needle-nose pliers, I could retrieve the CD! You can’t do it while you are driving – it takes 2 hands!

The rubber gasket around my sun roof is finished but it isn’t leaking. The plastic tray in the back where I put my groceries is broken. I kept the different pieces as they fell off. The A/C is broken, sort of.  It would work for a few miles then turn hot. I turned it off and waited several miles and turned it back on – cool air would flow! Not a good problem this week in the heat as I drove to NC to be with my father.

I love my car…but it is telling me something. It is time to retire it. I plan to give it a good home but I admit, I am sad. This car is the only one my grandchildren have known… It took me to Philadelphia when my daughter called to say there was something seriously wrong with her new-born. It took me to my Mother’s funeral. It picked me up at the airport more times than I can count.

In other words, I have memories with this car. It’s like a member of the family. I’ll get another one and make memories with it. After all, it is only a thing. But have you seen car prices?!! Even used ones…


Aging….is not for sissies! Things begin to leak, bulge, droop, sprout, wrinkle … Unfortunately things don’t fall off – like weight – but seem to hop on for the ride! On top of it all, things don’t work like they used to or if they do work, they ache! Reading glasses are a necessity to do the simplest things. Younger people treat me like I’m old – but I don’t feel like I should be old. Memory begins to face challenges… No. Aging is not for sissies.

But we will all have to deal with it. Either the aging of our parents or our friends and ourselves. Age is part of life. It keeps marching toward us whether we like it or not. No potion, lotion, capsule or surgeon’s knife can prevent the inevitable. And I can’t just go out and buy a newer model. I am what I am and where I am.

But I am glutted with memories. There is value in my years. And the best antidote for age is attitude. Youth seems to be attracted to  gratitude, enthusiasm, joy.

I have a friend who is the most negative person I know. They are afraid of dying. They are afraid they don’t have enough money. They are afraid they will be left all alone. They are afraid their health will fail. They are afraid they’ll have to be in a nursing home. They are afraid! And not enjoying the life they have left. It is so sad. I can be serif of this person has it was of another, “She dies at 35 but we buried her at 75!”

Having been to India this year I can make a long list of things to be grateful for! Just having clean water…my own space…plenty of food…

Yes, as we age, there are unpleasant things we have to deal with. What will my attitude be? Face it with good humor and grace? Or grumble and complain? I have a few friends with whom I compare aging notes – that’s one way you can tell you are getting older. You conversations are peppered with tales of ailments and doctor’s visits!

But there is more…so much more. Grandchildren! (Mine will all be here this 4th of July. That will provide some fireworks!) Friends who are traveling the same path. Life’s work and encouraging reports of what God is doing around the globe. Stimulating books and conversation over good coffee. It’s OK to take a nap in the middle of the day. I no longer feel I have to “measure up” – I am free to be myself – and I like myself! I don’t have to have all the answers – I just know the One Who does.