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Life’s Little Earthquakes

I am always aware of the Lord’s presence; He is near, and nothing can shake me.

Psalm 16:8 GNT

Earlier today I baked a new-to-me recipe called an Earthquake Cake. It’s a fascinating process. . .sort of an upside-down German Chocolate Cake with ribbons of cream cheese filling.

The filling is marbled into the batter. As the cake bakes, the filling causes (for lack of a better term) eruptions in the cake’s surface. What you’re left with is a rocky landscape of hills and valleys.

To be honest, I wasn’t sure how it was going to work out. . .but it did. In spite of the bumpy exterior, the interior was light, luscious, and filled with creamy goodness.

Notice how the cream cheese filling causes deep eruptions? They don’t just stop at the surface; they cut ribbons all the way down to the bottom.

Life is Filled with Eruptions Like That

Just about the time you think you’ve got a level playing field. . .bam! You’re hit from out of the blue with an unexpected tragedy.

It stinks.

Up. Down. Up. Down. It’s hard to get your bearings.

These shakings are tough to handle and it doesn’t help that we rarely have warning that they’re coming.

In many ways, the surface of our life feels a lot like that bumpy Earthquake Cake. Hard to navigate. And the ribbons of pain run deep. We try to plaster on a smile, to keep going, but underneath the surface there are cracks that eventually tear us open if we don’t deal with them.

A Recent Shaking

A couple of weeks back a neighbor’s house caught fire in the early morning hours. It was a particularly bad electrical fire that destroyed the entire house.

The family was sleeping at the time. My friend’s daughter was injured jumping out of her 2nd story bedroom window. Another person in the home received burns and a deep cut.

The whole thing was completely unexpected and shocking. (Can you imagine waking up to that?)

But they were spared. And they are recovering. The neighbors are rallying with a fundraiser to help the family. There are still lots of details to be worked out but the family is already picking up the pieces and trying to move forward, in spite of the eruptions.

That’s how it is when life shakes us.

We go through it. Ribbons of pain and grief shock us and drive deep chasms in our hearts. We wait and we wait. . .and we wonder if God is going to come through for us. Can He make something lovely out of this?

He can.

He will.

Please hold on.

Dealing with the Crevices

Back to my Earthquake Cake: It took an hour to bake, much longer than a “usual” cake. And, in spite of my impatience as that hour wore on, the end result was lovely. Those deep eruptions ended up adding depth of flavor and texture to the finished product.

I loved this cake so much that I plan to make it again and again. I think it will make the perfect gift for those who are going through a season of shaking.

Maybe you could use one, too.

No matter what sort of rocky road you’re navigating today. . .keep going. Don’t quit, even if your patience is wearing thin.

The shaking will settle. The crevices will be filled with His grace. And in the meantime, God’s presence will remain, a powerful force to see you through.


Jesus, I feel like the ground beneath my feet is trembling. It seems like the shaking won’t end. Until it does, I will trust You to see me through. Your presence will sustain me. Thank You for walking me across this bumpy road, Lord. Amen.

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