Have you ever seen raging water during or after a storm? I was on a boardwalk at the beach once during a hurricane (before being chased off by the Coast Guard). Enormous swells of violent water were thrashing all around as wind whipped and rain pelted down. Fear pulsed through my veins as I witnessed complete chaos. There was no rhyme or reason to the water’s movement as it crashed over and over again. It was almost like an un-caged wild animal mutilating everything in its sight.
Tragedies and trials unleash raging life storm waters.
They tear through our life without regard to what we hold dear or boundaries we believe should be left intact. Strongholds are leveled. Relationships are washed away. And the destruction is more than we can handle. Even after the initial storm has passed, turmoil continues as troubled water swirls and crashes through the remnants of our life. The devastation is overwhelming.
Many times the ravaging waters are near impossible to get through.
We know we have to cross over the tumultuous river to leave our old existence behind and begin our trek on the other side. But wading alone or building a rickety raft of waterlogged hope just won’t cut it. And unfortunately our physical and emotional resources are already tapped out. We have to find a way to the other side. But we can’t do it alone.
We need a bridge over troubled water. Someone to stand in the gap for us and be the bridge of hope.
This is what Sisterhood is all about. Bridging the gap. Holding out a hand of hope. Carrying the burdens of another. Being a shoulder to lean on and cry on. Praying for mercy and grace as the storm waters crash and swell.
For those of us who have survived the storms of life, we know the desperation that ensues. We owe it to our friends, our sisters, to be there with them. Not to offer directions of how to find a way out. But to walk the journey with them and ensure they make it to the other side.
Even if we can’t be with our sisters physically, we can walk with them.
We can be just a phone call away whenever the waters start to churn. We can be a prayer warrior like never before by committing to raise them up with hands lifted high until it hurts. We can send them notes of encouragement and continue to reach out to them on a daily basis so they know they’re not alone. And if we are close by, we can open our home to them. For a day or a week or a month. They need to know with certainty that they have a refuge. A place of love and safety to weather the storm and endure the aftermath. A place to decompress, talk, cry, and sort through options.
We can be that bridge of hope.
If you’ve never heard the song by Simon & Garfunkel “Bridge Over Troubled Water” (also sung by the cast of Glee), click the link and read the lyrics as you listen. Often friends flee when trouble rises. But sisters stand firm through the storm. We need that kind of bridge. We need to be that kind of bridge.
And if you ever have a doubt, know that Jesus is your solid bridge over every tragedy and trial. He will never be shaken. He’s the bridge that takes us all from death to life. From devastation to new beginnings.
Jesus is always standing in the gap. For you. For me. For everyone who calls upon His mighty name. You will never be alone in trouble.
“Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed. If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But someone who falls alone is in real trouble.” Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 (NLT)
May I pray?
Jesus, You are our bridge over troubled water. You stand in the gap for us as raging waters crash through our life. And yet, we still long for a shoulder to cry on. Someone to hold us tight and help us find our path through the aftermath. Lord, for those who are in troubled water, bless them with a sister to be Your hands and feet––to console, comfort and help. And for those of us who aren’t currently facing stormy waters, grant us Your strength to be a bridge and teach us how to stand in the gap as prayer warriors for our sisters. Amen.
Q4U: How can you be a bridge of hope to someone you know?