Here I raise my Ebenezer
Hither by thy help I’ve come;
And I hope by thy good pleasure
Safely to arrive at home.
Jesus sought me when a stranger,
Wandering far from the fold of God.
He to rescue me from danger
Interposed his precious blood.
-from the hymn, ‘Come thou fount of every blessing’.
It’s been happening at odd moments here and there across the past couple of weeks: I’ll be listening to the radio while doing dishes, or walking into town, to a friend’s house, down a perfectly mundane street and think, ‘Yes, I love this place’. This afternoon, restlessness drove me out of the office and down to the sea. Despite it being chill, damp, windy, I walked the length of East Sands and back. For the most part it was only me and the waves, the gulls, and the flock of swans gliding across the bay. I don’t go down to the sea nearly often enough, but the deep pull of the tide has already cast its spell on my heart, the crash of the surf resounds always even in the silences of night. I thank the Lord my God that of all the shores I could wash up on I was cast here, to this small town on the edge of the North Sea.
‘There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love. We love because he first loved us.’ (1 John 4.18-19)