YAHWEH TSURI: the lord is my rock

“Trust in the Lord forever,

For in God the LORD

We have an everlasting Rock

Isaiah 26:4


The Meaning of His Name:

At 5:08 on October 17th, 1989 an immense earthquake rocked our home in Santa Cruz, California.

The walls in the hallway seemed to bash into me as I scrambled to find my children. We huddled in a doorway watching pictures fly off the walls while hutches fell, plates crashed, and havoc reigned. When it was over we-tip toed our way barefoot through a living room strewn with shards of glass, desperate to flee the destruction in our home.

Outside, the news was not good.  Whole buildings had collapsed in the downtown area; bridges as far away as San Francisco had become tombs and people had died.

Yet our house still stood. Aside from a few broken pieces, damage was minimal.  Less than a mile from the epicenter, our little wood frame cottage held up admirably.


We were built on a rock.

Apparently, a solid ledge of basalt held our home tight throughout the thunderous shaking while buildings and bridges built on sandy loam collapsed like cards.

Just like God, the Rock.

When the houses we call our lives are built on God, the unpredictable events that rattle our realities will not collapse us. But if instead, we see a nice stretch of sandy soil and build our lives conveniently there, then when the earth shakes we get entrapped in the terror.

And the earth will shake, my dear friends!  Plates shift, pressure builds, and unforeseen circumstances change everything. That’s just the way it is down here in this place we call the real world.

What kind of soil are you building your family on?

Your relationships?

Your worth?

Just a couple of days ago I got one of those phone calls none of us much like. Someone close to me, someone I love a lot, was calling to let me know I’d let her down. I’d inadvertently embarrassed this dear friend in one of those flinging sentences that mean so little and hurt so much.

And now she was calling to let me know.

On my side of the AT&T airwaves I cowered a bit, shrinking from that mix of hurt and anger in her voice.

My bright day dimmed.

My heart cringed.

In the space of a few seconds, I started to sink.

The next couple of irretrievable hours were entirely devoted to picking up the pieces of own tumultuous emotions. Anger- how could she so misinterpret me? Embarrassment- how could I have missed that? Shame- what must she think of me? And rejection- will she love me now?

Notice the common denominator in all my questions— ME!

Suddenly I’d become the epicenter of my world and one good shake of disapproval knocked me flat.

Will I ever learn?

If, like me, you find yourself emotionally messed up by something so simple as a little bit of well-earned disapproval, or even an unjust criticism, maybe its time to ponder the problem.

Could it be that you need and want and crave approval so much that you’re building your emotional house on something you actually have very little control over?

That morning’s melt down made me think and pray long and hard about my own inordinate cravings for approval.

And here’s what I’ve come up with...

I am not the center of my world. And I do mess up. And people will disapprove. And sometimes they’ll even call on a sunny Saturday morning to tell me about it.

But if God is really my Rock, then when real life shakes me up, this little cottage I call me will hold firm.

Picking up a few broken pieces of my still unstable heart,


Psalm 40

Psalm 144:1-2, 7-10

Isaiah 26:1,2

Psalm 95:1

Matthew 7:24-29