Facing Rivers of Difficulties
by Herb Smith
A very tired traveler came to the banks of a river. There was no bridge by
which he could cross. It was winter, and the surface of the river was covered
with ice. It was getting dark, and he wanted to reach the other side while
there was enough light to see. He debated about whether or not the ice would
bear his weight. Finally, after much hesitation and fear, he got down on his
knees and began, very cautiously, to creep across the surface of the ice. He
hoped that by distributing the weight of his body, the ice would be less apt to
break under the load.
After he made his slow and painful journey about halfway across the river, he
suddenly heard the sound of singing behind him. Out of the dusk there came a
four-horse load of coal driven by a man singing merrily as he went his carefree
way. Here was the traveler, fearfully inching his way on his hands and knees.
And there, as if whisked along by the winter’s wind, went the driver, his
horses, his sled, and the heavy load of coal over the same river!
This story illustrates how so many of us go through life. Some stand on the
banks of decisions unable to make up their minds about the course to take.
Others stand on the banks trying to muster enough courage to cross over to the
other side of the task or problem encountered. On the other hand, some
individuals crawl and creep through life for fear of thin ice. Their faith is
not strong enough to hold them up. Still there are those who whisk along
whistling as they go. Their faith is unshakable.
When we face rivers of difficulties we do not have to fear, nor do we have to
creep through life. God has promised to help, and with God’s help we can
merrily make our way to the other side, safely.
“Are not two sparrows sold for a small coin? Yet not one of them falls to the
ground without your Father’s knowledge. Even all the hairs of your head are
counted. So do not be afraid, you are worth more than many sparrows.”