River Currents

"When all the nation had finished passing over the Jordan, the LORD said to Joshua, 'Take twelve men from the people, from each tribe a man, and command them, 'Take twelve stones from here out of the midst of the Jordan, from the very place where the priests' feet stood, and carry them over with you, and lay them down in the place where you lodge tonight.'' Then Joshua called the twelve men from the people of Israel, whom he had appointed, a man from each tribe; and Joshua said to them, 'Pass on before the ark of the LORD your God into the midst of the Jordan, and take up each of you a stone upon his shoulder, according to the number of the tribes of the people of Israel, that this may be a sign among you, when your children ask in time to come, 'What do those stones mean to you?' Then you shall tell them that the waters of the Jordan were cut off before the ark of the covenant of the LORD; when it passed over the Jordan, the waters of the Jordan were cut off. So these stones shall be to the people of Israel a memorial for ever.'" (1)

The Crossing

To cross the river of this life,
Where currents carry much downstream,
The swimmer's struggle is all strife --
How can this fruitless fight redeem?

Creator's laid the stepping stone:
Each one's a stretch; yet within reach.
I will not struggle on my own;
And, step by step, I'll near His beach.

The stepping stones of God's own love
Are pre-arranged by Providence.
To stay balanced, I look above,
And take each step with confidence.

If I should strike out on my own,
And slip beneath with current's pull,
I'll cling for life to Savior's stone --
Knowing my ransom's paid in full.

For God's love is a path to life:
Unwavered by the world's ways;
Steadfast in each struggle and strife;
And guarded by the Master's gaze.

(c) Paul Buis, 2001

(1) Joshua 4:1-7