A story is told of a punishing fire that consumed the Yellowstone National Park in the United States. After this hell of a fire died, forest rangers set out to evaluate its repercussions. One of the rangers found a large bird that lay dead on the base of a huge tree. It appeared that the bird had succumbed to the heat. In curiosity, the ranger knocked it over with a stick. Shockingly, three tiny chicks dashed from the dead bird’s wings.
The bird had carried her young ones to the base of the tree and assembled them under her wings. The choking smoke would rise above the ground but the heat of fire did not spare the bird. The bird refused to fly away to safety and leave her offspring being incinerated.
That is how God protects us. He sent His Son Jesus Christ to take the heat on our behalf. He did not waver even when it became very hot. He did not run away from the kitchen even when the heat and smoke had a heated debate on how to smoke Him out. He endured to earn us a safe passage. We came out unscathed. He is the same Jesus who stood in the fiery furnace with Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego. He did not allow the three Hebrew boys suffer the heat. He absorbed the heat in their stead.
He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.
Psalm 91:4; The NIV.
An apple of His eye
Should we say an apple a day keeps the doctor away, or an apple a day keeps the pharmacist away? I used to be a tormentor of apples sometimes back. I would religiously devour an apple each passing day. Somehow I lost it: I stopped this healthy habit. However, I have been contemplating to revert back to some of the beneficial old practices, and this one ranks high on the list.
I remember one day accidentally knocking over my red apple that was lying on the sink drain board. To my surprise, the apple fell into my shorts’ pocket.
The Almighty God works in a similar fashion. We stumble most of the time, but we always find ourselves in His pockets. He never promised a life free of stumbling, but He promised a fair landing.
Stalwart walks in step with God;
his path blazed by God, he’s happy.
If he stumbles, he’s not down for long;
God has a grip on his hand.
Psalm 37:23-24; The Message Bible
The Lord makes firm the steps
of the one who delights in him;
though he may stumble, he will not fall,
for the Lord upholds him with his hand.
Psalm 37:23-24; The NIV
We are the apple of His eye. He will protect us the way we protect the apple of our eyes. He will carry us under His wings.
For this is what the LORD Almighty says: “After the Glorious One has sent me against the nations that have plundered you–for whoever touches you touches the apple of his eye—
Zechariah 2:8; The NIV
Keep me as the apple of your eye;
hide me in the shadow of your wings
Psalm 17:8; The NIV