I’ll be completely honest, the last couple weeks of parenting have been exhausting. Adelyn hasn’t been the best napper during the day, which translates to not a lot of sleeping at night. I say that not as an excuse but to warn you this post isn’t as thought out as I would like. A couple days ago I had a really refreshing time in the word reading Psalm 46:1, which helped me weather my current “trouble”. I thought I’d share three nuggets God saw fit to show me, and I hope they are as encouraging to you as they were to me.
Psalm 46:1 – God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.
1) “God is our refuge.” A refuge is a place you go to during a chaotic time (storm, war, etc). Where would those be for you? Two places came to my mind. The first was the basement of The Crossing. During that storm a few weeks ago where tornadoes touched down in Columbia, I high-tailed it there because my house only has a crawl space. Because of its safety, The Crossing was a safe underground place, which I didn’t think twice about going to. I’m not quite as familiar with the second place that came to my mind: President Obama’s bunker at the White House. I have no idea the specific details, but I bet it’s like 4 or 5 stories underground, has pretty thick concrete walls lined with steel. You get the point – this is the place you’d want to be during a nuclear fallout.
If these temporary shelters are considered so safe, and we would flee to them without question during times of trouble, how much more secure is the eternal living God? How much safer will we be if we flee to him during the storms of our lives? In this life we’re not promised complete physical safety, but eternally speaking there is no safer place during troubled times than in the arms of God our Father.
2) “God is our refuge.” Not only is God your and my individual refuge, he is the church’s refuge. That’s a lot of people to be a complete and eternal refuge for. What kind of power do you have to be to provide that kind of safety for (hopefully) billions of people?
3) “God – a very present help in trouble.” Followers of Christ worship a God who understands there is something wrong with the world, that this world wasn’t made the way it was supposed to be. The God of the Bible entered into His once perfect world (tarnished by us no less) and remains a very present help. Our God does not shy away from the suffering you and I and all of creation go through every day – He gravitates toward that.
When you are in times of trouble, don’t listen to the voices in your head that tell you God doesn’t love you, or God is nowhere to be found. Instead, preach to yourself. Remind yourself that God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.