The Witch’s Finger. No, it is not the title of a fantasy book or film. The Witch’s Finger is the name of a stalagmite in Carlsbad Caverns, New Mexico. It’s one of the first major speleotherms (stalagmite/ stalactite) that the observer meets on the 850-foot vertical descent into the cave.
A speleotherm is formed when acidic water flows through cracks in limestone, dissolves the calcite, and then drips from the ceiling of a cave (slowly creating a stalactite – a formation that hangs from the ceiling) and hits the cave floor (slowly creating a stalagmite – a formation that grows from the floor).
What strikes people most when they come upon the Witch’s Finger is this: It is tall (standing about 30 feet above the trail). It stands alone (except for one smaller, stubby speleotherm nearby). It is skinny (only about 12 inches thick). And the ceiling above it is very high (about 100 feet). And, yes, it does look like the long, thin and knobby finger of an old witch traditionally portrayed in books and movies.How did the Witch’s Finger form? Its narrow width indicates that it was probably built up from a single dripping of calcite-laden water from above. Its height indicates that this single dripping continued for a very long time – perhaps for thousands of years. And the high ceiling above indicates that those individual, continuous drops of water traveled a distance to reach their mark on the floor of the cave. And those individual drops of water had to battle against a current of air that flows in and out of the cave – called “cave breathing.”
The growth of the Witch’s Finger reminds me of God’s precision faithfulness in our lives. Sometimes our faith is challenged, not only by the measure of God’s supply that’s required for our survival. Our faith is also challenged by the duration of that supply.
Most of us are not millionaires. We don’t have a surplus of cash as a buffer against poverty when times are tough. We’re ever conscious of our vulnerability. Yet God only gives us strength and resources for today – not for the entire year. We live one day at a time, and that’s the frequency at which God supplies comes to us.
Sure, we are tempted to wonder, “What about tomorrow?” For God’s supply will seem like a long, thin, tenuous line that barely remains unbroken against ever-shifting circumstances. But somehow, despite it all, God’s supply always reaches its mark.
Like the small, steady drops of calcite-laden water that always reach their mark 100 feet below, God’s supply will always reach us. Though the winds shift back and forth, God remains faithful. He knows your address and will never fail to get you all the grace and help you need. “As your days, so shall your strength be” is what God promised His people (Deuteronomy 33:25). When I see the Witch’s Finger is reminds me of King David’s testimony, “I was young, but now I am old; yet I have never seen the righteous forsaken or his descendants begging bread” (Psalm 37:25). God’s supply will never fail to reach us.
PRAYER: Dear Father in heaven, thank You for Your great and unfailing faithfulness to me. Though times and circumstances constantly change – You remain the same. Amen.