Reflection March 18


The Lord is my light and my salvation—  whom shall I fear?
The Lord is the stronghold of my life—  of whom shall I be afraid? 

Psalm 27:1

  I am a firefighter’s daughter. The picture is from Hurricane Harvey.

As a child the thought of my father, or anyone for that matter, running into a burning building never frightened me. Shift work schedules, occasional hospital visits (during which I got to play with the crutches), and the scent medley of diesel fuel, smoke, rubber, tobacco, and coffee were our norm. My dad was a hero, and I was a child who played carefree in the midst of such chaos. It was never the fire that taught me fear. It was growing up that schooled me in the language of doubt. Doubt crowds my mind, persuades me to distract myself, leads me to forget, and leaves me overwhelmed by worst case scenarios and fears of the past repeating itself.

 What causes us to charge the fires that burn despite the floods? What allows us to enter into the dark night? How do we recover the next morning, unscathed with only rain in our boots?

 I recall my grandmother’s voice teaching me to pray in the name of Jesus, and He comes to my mind. I remember He’s already made it through the fire, unscathed and beautiful. He’s beckoning me forward, up a safe path, encouraging me to take heart. As I step towards Him, the fires of doubt begin to subside. He offers a firm hand. I take it and see the way. Truth begins to resonate as we reach a clearing place. I can see the valley of fear below. There is nothing there. I had simply forgotten Him, but He had not forgotten me. Excitement grows as I catch my reflection in His eyes. I am still my Father’s carefree, playful daughter full of trust and wonder and He does not forsake me.

Jenna Simmons