Old Meeting House Congregational Church (1643)

The Best Hidden Church in Norwich

A Wall of Protection

The protecting wall which the love of God builds around a man’s soul is sometimes of such a nature that we will not believe it is there. We come to the flood-waters, and are fearfully convinced that we must cross them alone. God seems to have forgotten us, but it is only because we are looking for Him in a particular place and a particular form.

I came across an old story about the woods of Compiegne. Legend has it that they were a favourite hunting place for the French kings. For many months in the year the deer fled at the sound of the hunting-horn and the baying of the hounds. As they ran from their pursuers they left a trail, and the dogs picked up the scent. It seemed they could not escape. But, once a year the hunting stopped as though by some sudden royal command. It was not the king who had forbidden the hunt. Everywhere through the forest, a new carpet of living green was spreading. The lily-of-the-valley was coming into full bloom. Hour by hour the sweet fragrance of the young flowers invisible to the eye but a strong wall about the frightened deer. In vain the hounds strained to pick up the scent, but everywhere the perfume of the likes defeated them. The deer did not understand, but while the flowers bloomed, they slept in peace.

In Isaiah we read that when we pass through the waters, that God will be with us. This is the promise of God and though our bodies may be buffed – even destroyed – He will keep our souls. Nothing can destroy them in the security which He offers. But the flowers which protect us are the blossoming of our faith.


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