Where are you seeking refuge?
It is springtime in the southern state of Tennessee. Flowers are starting to bloom, trees bud their pink and white blossoms, pollen begins to wreak havoc on our sinuses…and the rain keeps coming.
Gray rainy days. Part of me wants to be outside digging my fingers into the dirt and getting my garden ready for planting. The other part of me is still hiding inside the house with my warm, fuzzy blanket trying to fend off the cold dampness.
In Psalms 57, David is hiding as well. It’s not with a warm, fuzzy blanket, but instead, he is hiding in a cave. King Saul tried to kill him again, and he is seeking refuge. I can almost hear his heart pounding, his breath still very short as he cries out to God when he says
Be merciful unto me, O God, be merciful unto me: for my soul trusteth in thee: yea, in the shadow of thy wings will I make my refuge, until these calamities be overpast. Psalms 57:1
A few weeks ago, I was at The Wilds Christian Camp for the spring ladies retreat, and the speaker there suggested reading Psalms 56. God was pointing me in the right direction, and I just kept reading onto chapter 57.
The words “in the shadow of thy wings will I make my refuge” caught my eye and my heart.
The rain had begun to lightly drizzle there that day. I was seated at my favorite spot at the camp. A small swingset overlooking the lake, a peaceful location. To me, it’s a holy place. A place where I have met God on a very special level. I treasure this place, so many happy memories there.
But that day, when I read that verse I did not run to find shelter. I simply let the rain continue to fall and let God speak to my heart even more. You see, a refuge is not a word that we use often today.
Kids playing tag may call it BASE, and they’re free from getting tagged (and able to catch their breath for a few minutes). A hardworking man may call this break-time. A few minutes to stop working and refill the coffee mug. A mother *hopefully,* can see this as a quick shower to be alone for a few minutes during her busy day with little children constantly around her.
Refuge means different things to different people at their stage in their life. That day, I saw refuge and realized that it could be a quick thing or it could be a place to stay. It could be my umbrella in the rain. Or it could be my tent and my shelter for longer lasting help.
The storms of life can sometimes swoop in and out of our life really quickly. A car accident lasts 5 or 6 seconds, and then it’s over. Dealing with the fallout, however, may take months. Job layoffs occur in 10 minutes or less. Trying to re-work finances and find a new job that pays the same or better, seems impossible. Week after a week start going by. Soon it turns into months or years, and one wonders where is my refuge?
The calamities are not passing me! They just keep coming.
I think David was starting to feel that exact same way. This wasn’t the first time Saul had tried to kill him, and he was probably thinking that one day he wasn’t going to miss. In his prayer, David pleads and begs for mercy. But what exactly is mercy? A free pass out of the storm? No. While God can do this, it is almost never given.
Mercy is the right hand of God holding your hand as the storm of life passes you. The timing of the storm is irrelevant. They can be short or long. But the hand remains there the same.
The LORD hath appeared of old unto me, saying, Yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting love: therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee. Jeremiah 31:3
What is your refuge?
As you look at your storm right now, what will be your refuge? Will it be a quick pop of the umbrella or will you make a shelter and stay put. Some storms come to test us. The quick ones, the quick prayer for wisdom to make a split-second decision.
Other times, the storms come to see where our strength really lies. A quick umbrella-like prayer will not suffice here. It will take the long-lasting shelter that God provides until is passed by and you are ready to keep moving forward in your Christian life. God wants us to rest in him. Sometimes He just wants us to stop… until the calamities are overpast.
Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for him. Psalms 37:7a
We have to rest in the God, in the difficulties of life or we can feel like we’re going to go crazy. So worried that we are no benefit to anyone.
It is easy to think that we always have to be moving forward. I mean, who wants to be a stagnant Christian? (usually, our pride says Not me!!) Life does not always agree with my pride. God may want us to fight and keep going. Other times, He just wants me to stopWe have to rest in the God to get through the difficulties of life. He must be our refuge. #christianity #faith #trustinGod #Christianlifecoach Click To Tweet
Stop. Rest. Wait. Stayed
All of these are true principles. It is easier to go into a storm with ‘guns a’blazing’, it’s harder to wait on Him. But when we do this, peace suddenly is found
Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee. Isaiah 26:3
But I will sing of thy power; yea, I will sing aloud of thy mercy in the morning: for thou hast been my defence and refuge in the day of my trouble. Unto thee, O my strength, will I sing: for God is my defence, and the God of my mercy. Psalms 57:16-17
Just as God was David’s refuge, you too can seek shelter in Him and His word. Do it today. It’s a lot warmer and safer when you are IN HIM.