God said to Moses, “. . . Say to the Israelites: ‘I am has sent me to you. . . . This is my name forever, the name you shall call me from generation to generation.
By the grace of God, I have survived many earthquakes. Once, I remember, the earth throbbed as the rocks below us ground against each other. Another time, it felt as if a freight train had slammed into our house. The most terrifying times are when earthquakes come in the dark of night and the house sways and groans; you don’t know whether it will collapse and bury you. Once, in a half-awake state, I dreamed that dinosaurs were attacking the house as it shook, and in terror I huddled against my wife, trembling. It was reassuring to read Psalm 46:1-2: “God is our refuge and strength . . . . Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea.”
Francis Schaeffer, a missionary in Europe a few decades ago, called the God who revealed himself in the Bible “The God Who Is There.” That perfectly describes the eternal name of God: I am. Not only does God exist, but he is also there, and we are saved by his love poured out among us. When the people of Israel were in misery, enslaved by Pharaoh, God let Moses know he had heard their cries for help; he cared about them in their suffering and had come to rescue them. It was then that he revealed his eternal name: I am.
O God, you are an ever-present help in times of trouble. Thank you that you are not a figment of wishful thinking but that you have existed from all eternity and are mighty to save. Amen.
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