Our pastor shared a story about a trip he took to Belize. It was a mission trip, but the last two days were set aside for sight-seeing. He and several others in the group took a rafting trip down a river. At one point the river actually went under the mountain so they wore head lamps. Part way through the trip, the guide offered to take them on a bonus trip. He said if they were claustrophobic, they shouldn’t go, but those that wanted to brave the cave, he would show them some ancient Mayan ruins.
Our pastor was one of the five who went. The pulled over to the side, set their rafts on the bank and headed into a cave. They started upright, but as they trudged on, they had to bend over to get through the passage. They kept getting lower and they were crawling on the their bellies through the rock. He said that they were starting to freak out a bit when the guide spoke in a very calm voice and this is what he said,
“Calm down. Listen to my voice. I’ve been here before. We will make it through.” This was a powerful image for me of what God tells us. Psalm 46:10a Be still and know that I am God.
As I face trials of my own, God is telling me, “Calm down. Listen to my voice. I’ve been here before. We will make it through.” He doesn’t say, “You will make it through.” He says we. He goes with me. He will go with you also.
The pastor said that eventually they came to a large open area of the cave where they could stand. The stalactites hung from the cave wall and their lights sparkled off of them, making them look like diamonds. The ruins were there and he said it was astonishingly beautiful. It took their breaths away.
What beauty does God have in store for you and me? Will we trust him through the tight spots even when we don’t know how long they will last or what we will see at the end? Will we calm down, and listen to his voice?