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September 6, 2014

How God acts as our safety net

by Dave Malnes

When life seems to get too complicated or the storms of difficult circumstances become too much, we are reminded that we have a safety net.

Rev. Jon Mahnke served as pastor for many years in the Bay Area. During one of his messages, he held up a large rusted bolt that has been sitting on his desk for many years. This particular bolt came from the Golden Gate bridge in San Francisco.

Safety nets on Golden Gate Bridge - 1936

Safety nets on Golden Gate Bridge – 1936

When the bridge was constructed in the early 1930’s it was a massive undertaking. The design was an engineering marvel. Many thought it would be too expensive and too hazardous to be built. Due to the treacherous winds and damp fog, many believed it would be too foolhardy to even try. The construction began in January, 1933.

Hundreds of steelworkers signed on to be a part of the construction. Each day, they were hoisted hundreds of feet above the frigid waters of the San Francisco bay. Nerves of steel were required to rivets bolts into the steel girders holding the bridge together. High winds, consistent foggy conditions, and slippery catwalks, made work treacherous. There could have been many fatalities during the construction from steelworkers falling into the waters below.

The engineers responded by designing a giant safety net. Hundreds of feet across, the net lay underneath the bridge to protect the workers. While the workers advanced the bridge, the net followed them each day. When the bridge was completed in 1937, the net safely caught nineteen workers. They dubbed those who fell as belonging to the “Halfway to Hell” club.

One of the great promises believers who are deemed righteous from God is that he provides a safety net. He promises that He will never let the righteous fall.

“The eternal God is your refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms.” (Deuteronomy 33:27)

An original bolt from the Golden Gate bridge.

An original bolt from the Golden Gate bridge.

The rusted bolt on Pastor Mahnke’s desk was a gift from a friend. He was a bridge worker on the Golden Gate who helped complete a massive project of replacing millions of the original bolts with new ones. He also told the story of how they provided the original workers with safety nets below. The net gave each worker a sense of peace and confidence. Whenever Jon looks at the bolt on his desk, he receives the same peace and confidence to carry out the work God has given him to do. God is his safety net. He will not fall. When difficult circumstances come or when God seems distant, he remembers that God never wavers. His everlasting arms will always be there to catch him.

“So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God.” (Isaiah 41:10

Do you have reminders on your desk or in your house that keeps God’s promises fresh and new? When the storms of life threaten to overturn your boat, are there verses you have to remind you that Jesus is in the boat with you?

A life in Christ goes through life with peace and confidence. They carry out His plans, His purpose, His will, His work knowing there is a safety net underneath.

God IS our refuge. He IS with you. Do not fear. His everlasting arms have you right where you need to be.

 

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