One opposite to time’s moment is eternity-to-come: “then” replacing “now”; future’s fulness overcoming present’s poverty. Thoreau uses a stream to describe another opposition: a juxtaposition of what is constantly passing with what just as constantly remains. “Time is but the stream I go a-fishing in. I drink at it; but while I drink I see the sandy bottom and detect how shallow it is. Its thin current slides away, but eternity remains” (Walden).
In Moses’ blessing for Asher, he uses the same juxtaposition: “…and as your days, so shall your strength be. There is none like God, O Jeshurun, who rides through the heavens to your help, through the skies in his majesty. The eternal God is your dwelling place, and underneath are the everlasting arms” (Deuteronomy 33).
Moses blesses Asher’s descendants with strength because they will face struggle. He promises them God’s help because they will need it. But alongside arriving help is the reminder that we already dwell in God’s eternal being. And underneath the strength which endures our days is the power which endures eternity. Eternity is not waiting for us to find it; it already envelopes us.
This week, may we see below the swift water’s glistening and turbulent blessings and curses, health and sickness, wealth and poverty, to the creek bed’s undisturbed fixity.