This verse jumps off the pages for me this morning! Not just because of my own set of particular circumstances, but more the definition and usage of a rock. Webster’s Online uses all of the other definitions of rock, before it uses the most basic. There is a movement “back and forth”. There is the description of what happens in the open sea when a storm hits a boat. To cause something to be upset. The idea that someone is jolted in the particular situation or pattern of normal in life. Then in music there is the “persistent heavily accented beat, with repetition of simple phrases”. Then watch this…Something like a rock in firmness: (1) : foundation, support (2) : refuge <a rock of independent thought … in an ocean of parochialism — Thomas Molnar : something that threatens or causes disaster. All of these definitions used to describe a simple boulder of various sizes that we pass by everyday.
I don’t want to debate what definition of rock means the most today. I simply believe that when we hear the word rock, most often we think in terms of a hard substance that we see everyday. Some of them we can pick up and skip across a lake. Some in the form of a mountain – and we can climb. Some in the form of a platform that the pilgrims may have or may not have landed on the stony beaches of New England. And then to some the platform that God revealed to Moses the 10 Commandments. All of these rocks are powerful and purposeful, but none of them are as life transforming as the One we stand on. You know the “rock that the builders rejected”, “our Cornerstone”, “our fortress in times of distress”, “the place that we are hidden by the Lord”, and then “our rock and our redeemer”.
Today, I’m reminded of the story of an immigrant family in the early 1700’s on their way to the great land soon to be named the United States of America. Their ship was engulfed in a great storm, bringing it to become a busted ship wreck upon the rocky shores of Nova Scotia. All were taken by the storm but a small 11 year old boy. When rescued days after the ship wreck, the young boy was asked if he was afraid and shaken. His reply was, “Yes I was scared and of course I was shaken, but the rock on which I landed was never scared, and it was never shaken! It never moved!”