Shalom finds anchor in trust—unshakeable, unmovable, bedrock trust. But in our highly transient and disposable world, who can you trust?
There are days when pressures and circumstances reach ‘category 5 hurricane’ level (that’s Ivan in Jamaica  and Katrina in New Orleans ). Sustained winds and imminent destruction summon every ounce of courage to press on. Is shalom a realistic hope?
My answer is ‘yes’, but not without price.
Shalom springs from a personal relationship with our Creator. Not a relationship defined by religious doctrine or ritual, but one that is authentic and tested by the realities of life. A relationship in which God is no longer a ‘Supreme Being’ or ‘Higher Power’ distant and detached, but a loving, caring Father keenly interested and engaged in our life. A relationship that is so personal and real that we share our true thoughts and feelings without reservation or fear. A relationship that is so authentic and true that we expect God to listen with utmost patience and empathy—understanding fully what we’re going through—and then to answer with reciprocal candor and concern. Only when I know with certainty that I am my Father’s child, loved without condition or reserve, can I trust Him to keep me safe and see me through the day. Only when I trust Him fully can I let go of me fears and insecurities and feel shalom.
On June 30, 1859, Charles Blondin stunned the world?by crossing the Niagara Gorge on a 3.25 inch rope.?The 1,100 foot Manila-hemp, strung 160 feet above the raging Niagara River,? deemed one of the most powerful river currents in the world,? provided a precarious crossing from American to Canadian soil and back again. ?Blondin made it look like child’s play.
Blondin followed his history-making feat with many other crossings, ?each more daring than the next: ?blindfolded, on stilts, sitting down midway to cook and eat an omelet, balancing on a chair with only one of its legs on the rope,? pushing a loaded wheelbarrow, among other theatrics.?Huge crowds cheered wildly as they watched impossible exploits performed before their very eyes!
On one of his stunts, Blondin piggy-backed his manager,? Harry Colcord, across the expanse.?Before beginning the death-defying journey Blondin gave these simple instructions:
“Look up, Harry. You are no longer Colcord, you are Blondin. Be a part of me—mind, body and soul. If I sway, sway with me.? Do not attempt to do any balancing yourself. If you do, we will both go to our death.”
That image and those words profoundly define trust.
Getting from where we are today to the amazing reality of shalom, ?we will have to piggy-back on Him, ?looking up with unwavering gaze to Heaven instead of our dizzying circumstances. Fully surrendered in relationship with Father, we become part of Christ—mind, body and soul;? our heart so attuned to Holy Spirit that our every move is synchronized with His slightest sway. Only then can He carry us step by step, ?perfectly balanced in shalom—?one step at a time, one day at a time!
Image from Blondin: His Life and Performances. Edited by G. Linnaeus Banks. London, New York: Routledge, Warne, and Routledge, 1862.