Tuesday 28 July 2020

HEBREWS 6 v 19

The mystery of the rope….


There is a strange thing happening in our garden and it has taken us a while to figure out what it is.

Let me first tell you that I have hung a natural fibre rope between two of our largest trees so that we can watch the antics of the squirrels as they try to get at the nuts and food we hang out – mainly for the birds, but also for our amusement.

The rope is visible from where we sit in the living room and the antics on it have kept us entertained daily since we put it up.

We now have three squirrels visiting and we are trying to work out the family dynamics etc….quite a nature lesson in itself.

Even the sparrow hawk has taken to balancing on it as a place to spy out her next meal!


However, one day, the rope was visibly lower and we wondered if the squirrels were either (a) eating too much and stretching the rope or

(b) landing too heavily on the rope from their flying leaps off the tree branches and so loosening the knots.

On inspection the knots were secure but the rope definitely was a couple of feet lower.

Quite bemusing.

Then it rained – typical English weather. Only a little sun then more rain.

From our seats indoors watching the rain, when we looked out at the rope, it was taut, visibly higher. How strange!


You may be clever enough to have figured it out by now, but it took us a while and a bit of research!

A dry rope relaxes and stretches, getting longer in length.

A wet one swells, tightens and contracts, getting shorter in length.

Mystery over. But it has kept us entertained.


It got me thinking about anchor ropes. The constant wet would keep them taut and strong, holding the ship fast and close. The wetter, the stronger, the more secure.

And it came to mind ‘We have an anchor that keeps the soul, steadfast and sure while the billows roll’– but what about the rope?

If we have an anchor, there must be a rope holding us to it.

My thoughts are that I have a spiritual rope fastened around me with Jesus, my anchor attached - that rock which cannot move.

As the hymn tells us, it is in the storm that the cables strain.

In the wet of the downpour they tighten and strain against the storms pull to hold the ship fast to the anchor.

We do well to remember that when times are ok, the rope is still there, slack maybe, but still there.

And we need to be assured that, at the first sign of any storm, it swells and tightens and secures us with ‘strength divine’, closer to the immovable rock.

that wonderful old hymn again – We have an Anchor that keeps the soul.

Hebrews 6 v 19 “we have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure”

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Mansfield Baptist Church
Rosemary Street
Mansfield, Nottinghamshire
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