How quickly the wind shifts! I had set out on a leisurely bike ride, but when I got out there I was having a great ride. My lap times were excellent, even on course to break my personal record. The wind (which can be an issue in bike riding) was blowing mostly across my route, only mildly impeding one direction, while slightly aiding in the other, so I started thinking about the possibility of potentially breaking my previous personal record for a 40K ride. However, only 6 miles into the ride the wind made a dramatic shift, and suddenly what had been feeling rather effortless became a strain.
It made me think about how this was like life: everything is going along smoothly when, wham, a major shift happens, and suddenly things become difficult. This happens in our personal lives, in the life of churches, and in nations. Sometimes the shift is for good, but in this fallen world it is the most striking when it is bad. Then we identify with the psalmist: “When the foundations are being destroyed, what can the righteous do?” (Psalm 11:3).
God has said that in its time I will do this swiftly (Isaiah 60:22). When He decides to move, the shift can be seismic. Many of us have been startled by the jarring cultural shift that has happened in our nation. What was once fringe has been pounded into the mainstream almost overnight. What had been merely aggravating is now alarming, and we are at a loss as to what to do to put things right again. If we believe in a righteous, just, and holy God who will judge the earth, and judge peoples for sin, we know our nation is now ripe for judgment. Where we had teetered on the brink before, the shifting wind has become gale force and we have been pushed across the line.
We return to the question, “What can the righteous do?” In the psalm, David shifts immediately to a focus on the Lord. When the foundations feel as if they are being destroyed, the righteous are to look to the Lord and remember: He is still on the throne; He sees all that is going on; He will judge the wicked; He will show His love to the righteous, who will be blessed to see His face.
The wind may shift dramatically, the foundations may shake to the point of destruction, but our God is unshiftable, unshakeable, and in control. He is working out His plan which has been in motion since before the world was created. Let us put our eyes and trust on Him, and keep them there.
For those for whom the end of the story is important, I did persevere for the 40K and did make a new personal record, because the wind that was stronger in my face was also stronger at my back. The trick was tucking in and not giving up when faced with the winds of adversity.