when she asks from the backseat with relate-able nervousness in her voice about the turn in the highway that overlooks the river from atop a steep hillside, "do cars turn and fall down there a lot?" and you shake your head no and pause and decide to finish the conversation, "god holds us all together and he keeps us safe and helps us stay on the road" and she gets excited about that truth, "really?" and how do you speak the importance of this reality when your own mouth sometimes doesn't believe it because wasn't it just this morning that the bowl of cereal went flying and kids were slow to get ready for school and you have a headache and there is disappointment and heartache about our weaknesses and life just seemed like we could fall over the edge. but it is true that life has cliffs and sharp turns and sometimes traveling them doesn't go all that well, but in those moments god holds us together then too.

and when the cliff that looks only scary from the westbound direction looks entirely gorgeous when driving eastward with its unobstructed view and you can see the beauty of the river and the orchards that surround it and it is especially breathtaking at carpool hour with the water reflecting the most beautiful light and you almost can't even see that you're overlooking a cliff because you're so taken back by the utter beauty and the nervousness subsides because of majestic beauty.

and that's the thing; that god doesn't just take everything that scares us or makes us mad and obliterate it like we sometimes want him to do but he steps into that stuff with us and lets us see the beauty beyond the edge with enlightened perspective and he doesn't stand in heaven and look at our awfulness and helplessness and obliterate us, but he gets closer to us and sends jesus into the midst of us so that he's nearer and so we can touch the living god and so that we can know that we don't need to fear and know that we are loved and that we are saved no matter if the road holds or gives way.

let love and faithfulness never leave you. bind them around your neck write them on the tablet of your heart