Having been back in Birmingham for nearly two weeks now, the roller-coaster experience of my year working with Oasis has well and truly started. Already, there have been ups and downs; times of great excitement, planning and dreaming for the future, tempered with the realities of personal struggles and the difficulties of adjusting to a brand new situation. In that, it was truly wonderful to be able to get some time this week to pause and refocus on what’s important. For a couple of days, I was able to join my Mum and Dad on holiday in North Devon – a 4 hour drive away, but definitely worth every minute. The company was (of course!) excellent, but more than that, the experience of being able to hit pause on the rush of starting a whole load of brand new things in Birmingham was just invaluable. In the past, on family holidays, we would often spend the time building sandcastles and ‘sea defences’ that would eventually wash away. For some reason, a foot-high wall of sand never proved enough to keep the tides at bay! Yet, in the years since I had last been there, so little had really changed. Certainly, a few of the shops were different and perhaps something of the cliffs had slipped into the sea, but the timeless quality remained.
The sheer beauty and scale of the natural world, so starkly illustrated by the Woolacombe coastline, brings with it a genuine sense of perspective. Though I might change, He won’t. Though my situations and locations and feelings might change, He won’t. An unchanging, eternal God. One who was here long before the coastline was formed and will be here long after the sea itself has ceased to exist either. Psalm 90, Verse 2 puts it very simply:
Before the mountains were born
or you brought forth the whole world,
from everlasting to everlasting you are God.
So as I return to Birmingham again, and prepare for the influx of students about to come and join the city once again, I rest anew in the one who is unchanging, and return refocused and refreshed. My past, present, and future is wholly secure in Him. Look to Him, gain some perspective, and continue on knowing that I am loved by the one who reigns from everlasting to everlasting. Father, Saviour, Lord.