Isaiah 48:18 (ESV)
18 Oh that you had paid attention to my commandments! Then your peace would have been like a river, and your righteousness like the waves of the sea;
A river is a natural flowing body of water, usually freshwater, flowing towards another body of water. Either an ocean, sea, lake, or another river. Maybe that’s why Isaiah 48:18 came to mind, “Peace like a river.”
It’s not just a sense of safety, it’s one that’s going somewhere. The same word that translates river, also translates flood. It usally means a good flood, but a flood nontheless.
What came to mind when I read this, we’re two images. A sirene river, and a group of people in danger, safe in the group, but surrounded by danger. They were escaping something, going to a place of complete safety.
I imagined what it must have felt like if you were some of those who disguised themselves, and escaped Germany in World War II. They were safe, in the group they were with, but surrounded by danger.
They were traveling through a channel of safety, onto a bigger world. Sound familiar? I’m reminded that Jesus said, “…in the world you’ll have tribulation, but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” Our safety isn’t in our location, it’s in Who is traveling with us.
Whether you’re talking about life itself, the next adventure of your story, or a hope or dream, every arrival is a new journey. We’re safe in that journey, when we are in Him, but our safety isn’t in our surroundings. River banks can be filled with dirt, rocks, animals, and enemies, but the river is clear of all of that.
Often, I’m guilty of judging my situation by the bank, and not the current. The nature of the bank will change by season, but even in winter, the river is still a river. Even when frozen, the river is still water by nature, and it’s still connected to something bigger than itself.
Our situation does not determine our nature, Our Father chose that. He made us new, He made us like Him, and He will keep us through the storm. So let the lightning clash, and the thunder roll. Let our enemies threaten and make noise. If we hold to Jesus, all the time, we’ll have Peace like a river!