Black Rocks & God’s Voice

Stolen from a letter.

(Not stolen so much as copied, which is totally allowable, since it’s a letter I wrote.)

I went to Black Rocks yesterday. I walked and walked, back and forth, and farther than I typically go (something about stepping over the uneven rocks wigs me out and makes me dizzy, so I usually don’t explore very far). After about twenty or thirty minutes of mindlessly wandering in and out of the shoreline, I found myself tucked down below one of the big rocks right at the edge of the water.

I sat there, back against rock, feet upon rock, hands on rock, and I just listened. Though She looked relatively calm, I realized that here, at the base of the rocks, Superior was churning. She thrashed and gulped, slapping the rocks (and me) and sending Her spray higher than the big rock that was hiding me. I didn’t think, didn’t talk, didn’t feel, didn’t pray or sing; I just sat and listened. It’s the first time in a very long while that I’ve been truly silent in both mind and spirit. I listened, and after I-don’t-know-how-long, I heard myself sing a line from the Psalms that I’d put to music years ago: The voice of the Lord is on the waters.

And then my mind caught up and wanted words. What was “the voice of the Lord” saying? I grew angry for a moment, because the crashing waves sounded majestic…maybe even joyful; and how could God be rejoicing?

And…then…my heart crumbled in shame, because the churning sounded like sorrow…like turmoil.

But then my spirit made sense of it. It is right that God’s voice should sound both victorious and grieved. These are, after all, the very contradictions of our faith: that Christ commands even the waves, and yet He walks through our sorrows–He carries them for us…because He knows we cannot.

Blessed are we who mourn; we shall be comforted.