Pristine Grace

Leaning Leaning!
by Eileen Beckett
Leaning Leaning!

I was reminded of this hymn just the other day and I remembered that it was my very first favorite hymn “Leaning on the Everlasting Arms”. I think it was probably the song I heard when I went to church the first time as a believer. It comes from Deuteronomy 34: 27 which says: “The eternal God is a dwelling place, and underneath are the everlasting arms”. Of course we know that Jehovah God doesn’t have arms for us to lean on but He speaks to us in ways that we as creatures can understand. “This is what the learned people call an anthropomorphism which means that in order to understand some of God and to relate to Him, we attribute to Him human characteristics. (The word is made up of two main parts “anthro” meaning man and “morph” meaning to take the shape or form of.)”

Psalm 89:13 “You have a strong arm; Your hand is mighty, Your right hand is exalted”; He is mighty to save, He is mighty with power, He is the Almighty. We remember that it was God who picked us up out of the miry clay and set us upon a rock, the Rock of our salvation the Lord Jesus. Psalm 40:2 We used to sing Psalm 37:23-24 in church and I was always comforted to know that although I might fall I would never be utterly cast down because His arms were underneath upholding me. 

To lean on Him speaks to us in so many ways and I think that is why the song is so meaningful. He is our protection and we ought to know that if we trust Him with our very souls we can trust Him with every moment of our days. “The LORD redeemeth the soul of his servants: and none of them that trust in him shall be desolate” Psalm 34:22 

It is futile to put our full trust/confidence in men for all men are untrustworthy in one way or another and we all know that in our own experience. We must also include ourselves because we fail in being trustworthy as well because we are sinful creatures. We are told that it is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in man, Psalm 118:8 and yet how often we run to men thinking that they will surely protect and defend us only to find sore disappointment. He works those disappointments for our good and in them we are pointed to the trustworthy One. Certainly we have a measure of trust in those that we love but ultimately we should remember that our faith, trust and confidence should be in God alone. 

I can’t lean for you and you can’t lean for me but what we can do is encourage one another with the Word of God as we see the day approaching. We can remind one another that the Lord is our Rock, our defender and our fortress as we keep on the path and as we trust Him on the journey. We truly are safe and secure! 

What have I to dread, what have I to fear,
Leaning on the everlasting arms;
I have blessed peace with my Lord so near,
Leaning on the everlasting arms.
Leaning, leaning, safe and secure from all alarms;
Leaning, leaning, leaning on the everlasting arms

Grace and Peace!