According to a UPI report (November 16, 2015) a company in Malmo, Sweden has developed an alternative to bicycle helmets. It’s an airbag that, when needed, springs into action and covers the entire cranium with a gas-filled cushion. The “Hovding collar” simply zips around the cyclist’s neck. A mechanism inside the collar checks 200 times every second to see if the cyclist is falling. It’s been seven years in the making and Hovding has used stunt riders thousands of times to test it. Its advantage over a traditional bike helmet is twofold. First, the Hovding collar cushions the cyclist’s head and neck rather than simply adding a hard layer to them – which itself might do injury in the event of a fall. Second, the collar cushions the head and neck only when needed, rather than constantly smothering the cyclist.
This idea of cushioning rather than bracing, at just the right time, reminds me of the way God protects us. The Scripture certainly speaks of “the armor of God” – God’s attributes of power, truth, righteousness, and faith that act as steel-plating to deflect the flaming missiles of the devil (Ephesians 6:10-18). But what cushions the delicate tissue behind the steel? What guards the heart, brain, and other vital organs against bruising and concussion?
God’s love and kindness cushion us when life gives us a battering. They soften the blows and absorb the shock of life’s punches. And God’s love is there when we need it the most. God’s help and protection is always on time. We might feel as defenseless as a turtle without its shell, but God’s covering of love will be there for us when we need it most. This is the language of Isaiah 40:11, where the prophet speaks of God caring for His people: “Like a shepherd He will tend His flock, in His arm He will gather the lambs and carry them in His bosom; He will gently lead the nursing ewes.”
If you’re facing some brutal circumstances, ask God to surround and cushion you with His love. He who has already removed the sting from death (1 Corinthians 15:54-57) can surely soften the shock of life’s adversities.
PRAYER: Dear Father in heaven, sometimes I am hurting from head to toe and down deep in my soul. Please pour Your healing love upon me. Please cushion me from life’s blows. Please be there for me when I need You most. Amen.