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Sunday, August 8, 2010

Step out of the traffic

1-3 God is a safe place to hide, ready to help when we need him. We stand fearless at the cliff-edge of doom, courageous in seastorm and earthquake, before the rush and roar of oceans, the tremors that shift mountains.



Jacob-wrestling God fights for us, God-of-Angel-Armies protects us. 


4-6 River fountains splash joy, cooling God's city, this sacred haunt of the Most High. God lives here, the streets are safe, God at your service from crack of dawn. Godless nations rant and rave, kings and kingdoms threaten, but Earth does anything he says.  7 Jacob-wrestling God fights for us, God-of-Angel-Armies protects us.  8-10 Attention, all! See the marvels of God! He plants flowers and trees all over the earth, bans war from pole to pole, breaks all the weapons across his knee.  "Step out of the traffic! Take a long, loving look at me, your High God, above politics, above everything."  11 Jacob-wrestling God fights for us, God-of-Angel-Armies protects us.  (Psalm 46)

This is a rather long passage, but it is a psalm written to bring attention to the God who is both protector and defender of the ones who serve him whole-heartedly.  Our psalmist is one of the sons of Korah - and his opening words say much that suggest exactly what he understood about the God he served.  God is a safe place to hide, ready to help when we need him!  A safe place to hide - we find all kinds of things to hide behind, but no other place of hiding is as secure as when we hide behind the shelter of him!  A ready help when we need him - when exactly is that?  We often need God sooner than we recognize our inability to meet what it is we need in our own abilities.  Yet, God stands ready exactly when we are ready to accept the help he has planned for us in the very circumstance of life we find ourselves in today.

God lives here - these words reveal much for those of us who long to enjoy the defense and protection of our great God.  He has a "residence" within that is both understood and experienced.  His presence indwells us and envelopes our entire being - making every step we take secure and safe.

Look at what the psalmist reveals about what God has to say to those of us that are caught up in the fray or the frenzy of the moment - step out of the traffic!  Sometimes life comes at us like traffic in the streets.  We go through it narrowly dodging this onslaught and that bit of cross-traffic.  Then we venture on, oblivious to the changing lights that bring even more traffic directly into our path.  We are distracted by the movements around us - losing our focus on the peace that indwells us.

God reminds us that it is when we "step out of the traffic" that we come to fully depend on him - it changes our focus and establishes our heart.  The foundation is strong because of the focus that is maintained.  Don't you think it is about time that you step out of the traffic of your day and spend some time redirecting your focus a while?  It is there that your soul will be revived, your spirit refreshed, and your mind renewed.