As a little girl, I collected rocks of all shapes and sizes. I can remember stashing them in my pockets as I came across them in my backyard adventures. I would gather small stones and paint faces on them, grouping them together as a choir or students in a classroom. As I got older, my fondness for rocks didn’t change, only my use of them. Even now I use them as simple decoration in glass jars in my home or display clusters of them in flower beds in the yard.
Just as I have had different uses for a “pocket full of rocks” through the years, I am reminded in God’s Word of the importance rocks can have and the impact they can make on others with their use.
In the book of John, we can read about the woman accused of adultery by the religious leaders. As they brought her before Jesus, hoping for his judgment, the crowd surrounded the woman, planning to use their rocks to cast blame and condemnation on her. They pretended they were without any faults of their own and enjoyed watching someone else suffer at an accusing hand.
God’s Word also talks about David, a lowly shepherd boy using a “pocket full of rocks”. I can picture David as he attends his sheep in the quiet of the day, always looking for predators stalking the flock. There’s no telling how many wolves he frightened away with that sling shot of his! But one day, David used just one little rock in that sling to slay the giant, Goliath. Armed with the power of God, David did with one rock what no other man was willing to attempt. God’s funny like that. He used an unsuspecting little shepherd boy to do His will because no grown men were willing to take a stand for Him.
Jacob used a stone for his pillow while he slept in the wide open one night, the sky overhead acting as a canopy. After dreaming of a ladder with angels ascending and descending from it, Jacob realized that God was still with him, even after all of the mistakes he had made in his life. The next morning, he took that same stone and set it up as a monument to God. He declared that spot to be “Beth-el”, meaning “the house of God”.
There is a big difference in the characters in these stories and the use of the rocks in their possession. The rocks could ultimately be used for evil or they could be used for good. We also have a choice to make about what we will do with our own precious stones.
Just like the accusing crowd about to stone the adulterous woman with their rocks, I can stand in judgment of others and gather stones to hurl at them, not stopping long enough to see the sin in my own life. Or I can learn from David and make wise use of the rocks I’ve collected. I can listen to the voice of the Holy Spirit and be willing to go up against the giants that I face, to take a stand for the righteous and just. I can also use the symbol of a rock to remind me of God’s sovereign rule over my life. I can trust in His strength and know that He is always watching me and anything that concerns me.
As I think about the various rocks I have had in my possession over the years, I am reminded of the most important rock of all – the Rock of our Salvation, Jesus Christ. In Him, we can take refuge.
“The Lord is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge. He is my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold” Psalm 18:2 (NIV)
By Lynn, Whispers from Wildwood