I guess if I could say one hymn has been my favorite for all time, it would be “Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing.” When I was a young woman, I was once taped along with three other women singing this for a local radio program. The way I remember it, my father told everyone about my singing on the radio and my family all waited expectantly to hear it. When the taped show finally came on the air, we were all surprised to hear what sounded like of a quartet of men singing the familiar words of this song. As memories are so often, just bits and pieces of information recalled in the brain, I have no recollection of a re-taping or airing nor any other attempts to be recorded for the station. Even with the disappointment of our badly taped debut on the radio, this hymn made its way into my heart. Today, as I look back, I can see how God preserved this song in my heart as a help and a reminder of His faithfulness.
About six months ago, God reminded me of the story in I Samuel 7 where Samuel took a single rock and set it up as a place of remembrance where God had helped them triumph over their Philistine enemies. The words of these scriptures have much to say about how God feels about our enemies and lengths to which He will go to bring victory in our lives.
“While Samuel was offering the sacrifice, the Philistines came within range to fight Israel. Just then God thundered, a huge thunderclap exploding among the Philistines. They panicked—mass confusion!and ran helter skelter from Israel. Israel poured out of Mizpah and gave chase, killing Philistines right and left, to a point just beyond Beth Car. Samuel took a single rock and set it upright between Mizpah and Shen. He named it “Ebenezer” (Rock of Help) saying, 'this marks the place where God helped us.'”
Six months ago I was in a tremendous battle with the enemy, of which only a few of my closest friends know about. These friends prayed fervently for me as I felt the darkness closing in on me. What felt like the end of everything God has done in my life to raise me up as an ambassador for Him, was turned around and a tremendous victory came. The words “eternally grateful” come to my mind. My heart was so filled with thanksgiving to my God and for the intercessors who prayed for me that I could hardly contain the emotions. I never wanted to forget the way God had moved on my circumstances and the way He'd delivered me.
But, we tend to forget.
When the next battle or circumstance comes we find ourselves trying to muster up the faith to trust Him for the outcome.
Throughout what I'll call my “dark night of the soul,” I decided to record scriptures each day that ministered to me. The faithfulness of God, in bringing His Word to me, through friends as well as strangers, became very evident after only a week or two. I recorded these on a spreadsheet with the intention of remembering His goodness. After reading the account in I Samuel and experiencing such a victory, I even felt the desire to make my intention more visible and concrete so as not to forget God's intervention in my life.
I began a search on the Internet for crafting my own “Ebenezer Stone” and found many different ideas. These gave me the inspiration I needed but I wanted to make it my own. I decided on something I knew I could paint myself with some degree of success. I secured my rock and began the process.
Life becomes busy and we can “forget to remember.” It's been months since my first efforts became simply a blue painted rock and then a five petaled flower to represent God's grace in my life. It wasn't until I was hit with a new “dark night” that I found myself determined to finish the project and place it in a prominent position where I would see my Stone of Help every day as I enter my home. A competent artist I am not. However, the beauty of my single stone can be found in the Words of God I've recorded there. It is so deeply personal to me, the Word of God spoken to into my heart, when I needed Him so desperately.
I invite you to read the words I've recorded on one small rock and perhaps be inspired to remember and record something He has done for you.
Psalm 138:3 “The moment I called out, you stepped in...”
Isaiah 54:17 “...but no weapon that can hurt you has ever been forged....This is what God's servants can expect. I'll see to it that everything works out for the best. God's Decree.”
Isaiah 43:1-2 “...Don't be afraid, I've redeemed you. I've called you by name. You're mine. When you're in over your head, I'll be there with you. When you're in rough waters, you will not go down. When you're between a rock and a hard place, it won't be a dead end---Because I am God, your personal God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior. I paid a huge price for you....That's how much I love you! I'd sell off the whole world to get you back, trade the creation just for you.”
Colossians 2:15 “Think of it! All sins forgiven, the slate wiped clean, that old arrest warrant canceled and nailed to Christ's cross. He stripped all the spiritual tyrants in the universe of their sham authority at the Cross and marched them naked through the streets.”
Romans 8:28 “That's why we can be so sure that every detail in our lives of love for God is worked into something good.”
I am not an accomplished singer either, so in conclusion I will share a few of the words of my favorite hymn Come Thou Fount. My heart swells this morning with the completion of my Ebenezer Stone and I raise it up as a testimony of all He continues to do in my life.
From the song Come, Thou Fount
“...thou hast brought me to this place....
and I know Thy hand will bring me Safely home by Thy good grace.”