The Lord created and shaped and formed Israel – the people God affectionately nicknamed “Jacob.” Now this is what the Lord says: “Do not be afraid, because I have redeemed you. I have called you by name; you are Mine. When you pass through the deep waters and are in over your head, I will be right there with you. When you go through the raging rivers, they will not overwhelm you by sweeping over you and taking you all the way down. When you walk through blazing fire you will not be scorched, and the fierce flame will not set you ablaze. Why? Because I am the Lord your personal God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior….” (Isaiah 43:1-3a)
What happens to us is significant. Our perspective about what happens to us is even more significant in the long run. A “frame” or a “frame of reference” is a way we describe how we look at life or the things of this life. When we “re-frame” something, we decide to begin looking at the same reality in a different way or in a different light or from a different perspective. For example, how are Kansas City Chiefs fans reframing the word “quarterback” these days? Why? We can reframe a problem as an opportunity. We can reframe a weakness as a strength. We can reframe a tragedy as….
On October 1, 2017 Oshia Collins-Waters and Todd Wienke attended a concert in Las Vegas. During the concert a human monster shot hundreds of people, killing 58 people. Todd took three bullets while using his body to shield Oshia and others from harm. Today Todd is in constant pain because of bullet fragments doctors could not remove. Today Oshia is in therapy from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. But they refuse to let that unimaginably horrific event define their lives. On October 1, 2018, Oshia and Todd returned to Las Vegas, to the scene of the massacre, and got married. That’s reframing!
According to Isaiah 43:1-3a, who is God in our lives and where is God in our lives?
What are some examples of “raging rivers” and “blazing fires” in your life?
How are the raging river and the blazing fire similar? How are the raging river and the blazing fire different?
How do the raging river and the blazing fire feel?
What does God promise to people who are in the raging river or in the blazing fire?
How did you see life / God / faith BEFORE the raging river or the blazing fire?
How do you see life / God / faith IN the raging river or the blazing fire?
How do you see life / God / faith AFTER the raging river or the blazing fire?
What perspective shift or reframing movement is emerging in you? How can you cooperate with the reframing shift this week?
What prayer rises up in you from Isaiah 43:1-3a? What does your heart want to say to God or ask God?
Grace and peace,
Rick Jordan (firstname.lastname@example.org, www.rickcarlajordan.com)