The Anchor

Over the last several weeks, our great nation celebrated Veteran’s Day and
commemorated Thanksgiving Day. Each of these yearly observances honors the labors of
enlisted persons and our forefathers, respectively, that invested in our country to advance the
cause of liberty. History testifies that many of those, whose lives were in danger due to their
commitments, found the grace to endure because of faith in God. Trust in the Almighty serves
as an anchor during life’s most difficult trials. (The following article was written by Pastor Tim
Robinson of Puyallup, WA and republished by his permission.)

“In 1836, newly married Marcus and Narcissa left the comforts of the east to fulfill their
God-given calling: to evangelize the Indians near fort Walla Walla in what is now southeastern
Washington State. Life was hard but rewarding and their labors were paying off in souls as the
mission took shape and grew. Marcus and Narcissa's hearts were filled with special joy on March
14, 1837, Narcissa's twenty-ninth birthday, when she gave birth to the first white American born
in Oregon Country.
 
Their familial joy was cut short, however, when their daughter, Alice, fell into the
Walla Walla river and drowned only two years later. Narcissa was heartbroken. Devastated
and despondent, she contemplated leaving the mission and going back home in the east, where
she was a well-respected singer and could have enjoyed a socialite's cheery life of ease. The
Whitmans contemplated leaving the mission; but they could not go. In spite of broken hearts and
in the face of increasing danger from growing hostilities towards the mission from some hostile
Indians, the Whitmans continued to bring the Gospel and medical care to the local tribes. Why,
when they were so endangered and devastated, did Marcus and Narcissa not forsake the place
that had brought them such pain? In part, it was their sense of calling; but the anchor that was
buried so deeply in that soil was the body of her little girl. Narcissa simply could not tear herself
away.
 
In their pain, the Whitmans touched a deep part of the Father's heart. God so loved the
world that He sent His own Son into the world to save it. (John 3:16) He will never leave nor
forsake the world. (Hebrews 13:5) Even if it were in His heart to do so (which it isn't), the
Father could never tear Himself away from this planet, nor from you. When Jesus died on the
cross, it anchored God's heart in this world much more deeply than we can imagine. That cross
carried the life blood of Jesus into the ground. God will never, ever give up, let go, leave, quit
thinking about this earth.., and that includes you!
 
When you feel distanced from God or abandoned by Him, remember the cross. Just as
Jesus Christ is the anchor of our soul in the heavens (Hebrews 6:19-20); so also He is the anchor
of God's Spirit on this earth. May you feel Him drawing close to you today; and may you be
touched deeply by His Presence.”

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~Dr. Patti Amsden