Showing posts with the label Shelter

Knock, Knock - I know who's there!

There are a lot of way to be 'beat down' by the things and people we have to deal with each and every day - just walking this earth today may make you feel that you are persistently beaten down - worn out by hard or unnecessary abuse.  There are those who have suffered repeated blows to their ego, emotions, or physical well-being. The repeated blows have left behind damage that seems to do nothing more than place on public display the defects of our lives. To each of us with 'damaged lives' let me just give you a word of encouragement - God isn't put-off by our damage! God 's a safe-house for the battered, a sanctuary during bad times. The moment you arrive, you relax; you're never sorry you knocked.   (Psalm 9:9-10) What?  The anointed of God, the one who has been hand-chosen by God, feels beaten down, abused, emotionally spent, like his or her life mattered for little in the scheme of things?  Yep - it happens to the best of us! We each experience e

Get to the shelter!

I am pleading with the Eternal for this one thing, my soul’s desire:  To live with Him all of my days—in the shadow of His temple, to behold His beauty and ponder His ways in the company of His people.  His house is my shelter and secret retreat.  It is there I find peace in the midst of storm and turmoil.  Safety sits with me in the hiding place of God.  He will set me on a rock, high above the fray.   (Psalm 27:4-5 VOICE) "Be true to yourself, help others, make each day your masterpiece, make friendship a fine art, drink deeply from good books - especially the Bible, build a shelter against a rainy day, give thanks for your blessings and pray for guidance every day." (John Wooden)  Mr. Wooden was a college basketball coach, spending most of his career at the UCLA campus coaching the team into national play-offs and huge wins.  His "drive" was a bit more "internal" than it was "external" though - for his drive came from the relationship he ha

Shelter me

When it rains, where do we head?  Indoors or under the protection of an overhang, right? Why do we do this?  We won't melt in the rain!  We just want to avoid all the consequences of being "out in the rain" - like wet clothes, spotted eyeglasses, catching a chill, etc.  When the sun is beating down and it is hot, hot, hot - where do we head?  Into the protection of a shade tree, or indoors where it is cool because of air conditioned air!  Why?  We don't want to fry to a crisp in the hot sun, nor do we enjoy the draining feeling the heat produces on our bodies.  We "go to" shelter because we see something in our lives as a "threat" or "nuisance". We want to avoid whatever it is and so we take shelter from it.  I don't think this is necessarily a bad thing to do - for shelter is often the exact opposite of remaining in harm's way! Live under the protection  of God Most High  and stay in the shadow  of God All-Powerful.   Then y

Did someone say "Retreat!"

You're my place of quiet retreat;  I wait for your Word to renew me.  (Psalm 119:114 The Message) As time passes, I have realized the value of times of retreat.  I used to think of times of retreat as something along the line of a "forced withdrawal".  I really just did not enjoy time away from what I was doing everyday.  Some would have called me a little too "retentive" - - if you know what I mean!  I have come to recognize that "retreat" is sometimes the most strategic thing you can do! The very act of withdrawing into a place of quiet and safety is often the best "move" we make.  That very "movement" into a place of what appears to be a "lack of movement" is actually bringing us to a place of refuge - - within that refuge, there is privacy for the planning of the next movements we will make. The opposite of retreat is advancement.  There are very specific times when we need to pull away, step back,

Running for the Safe-House

  9-10   God 's a safe-house for the battered,       a sanctuary during bad times.    The moment you arrive, you relax;       you're never sorry you knocked.  (Psalm 9:9-10) If you have ever watched a spy movie, or perhaps a story about someone in the witness protection program, you will understand the term "safe-house".  I looked this term up this morning and found a rather interesting definition:  A dwelling or building whose "conventional" appearance makes it a safe or "inconspicuous" place for hiding, taking refuge, or carrying on clandestine activities.  Okay, so let's take that apart a little further to see what God is really saying to us in these verses: 1.  A safe-house has a normal appearance - it does not stand out, with all kinds of signs that it is a place of shelter.  If it had bars on all the windows, motion detectors in the yard, a huge fence surrounding the lot, etc., people would be suspicious about what goes on within the

Halted by our Guard

7-8   God  guards you from every evil, he guards your very life.    He guards you when you leave and when you return,       he guards you now, he guards you always. (Psalm 121:7-8) When I was in the military, I had the unfortunate lot of pulling "guard duty" on a few select occasions.  The thing that struck me most was that I was guarding "stuff" that I had no clue that anybody would want!  Sometimes I'd be assigned to the motor pool - now, I ask you, who wants an olive drab sedan?  At others, I'd walk the perimeter of the base, looking for intruders., ask me if I EVER saw any?  Nope!  So, what was the purpose?  Simply because you never know when the enemy will attack, or at what location.  So you "prepare" for the worst! Our passage today is taken from a psalm that celebrates God's watchfulness over his children.  The writer begins with the question, "Where does my help come from?"  David knew that his "help&quo

A refuge like no other

1-2  God, the one and only— I'll wait as long as he says. Everything I need comes from him, so why not? He's solid rock under my feet, breathing room for my soul, a n impregnable castle: I'm set for life.  (Psalm 62:1-2 The Message Bible) 1  Truly my soul finds rest in God; my salvation comes from him.  2  Truly he is my rock and my salvation; he is my fortress, I will never be shaken. (Psalm 62:1-2 The New International Version) David spends a good deal of time in this Psalm addressing his enemies, those he considers to be is close friends, and even himself.  He is proclaiming his position in God - impregnable, immovable, solid.  When one finds that they are mobile - they are capable of being moved - changeable in mood, appearance, or purpose. When one is immobile - there is a fixed position in mind - incapable of being moved or not moving at all. David was surrounded by enemies - the battle was ON.  Though surrounded on all sides, he declares that he is fixed on God an

Never sorry you knocked!

  9-10   God 's a safe-house for the battered,       a sanctuary during bad times.    The moment you arrive, you relax;       you're never sorry you knocked.  (Psalm 9:9-10) There are many walking this earth today that feel that they are persistently beaten down - worn out by hard or unnecessary abuse.  They have suffered repeated blows to their ego, emotions, or physical well-being.  The repeated blows have made damage that seems to do nothing more than place on display the defects of our lives.  David probably was feeling a little of this with all the things he was dealing with as King of Israel, the anointed of God.   What?  The anointed of God, the one hand-chosen by God, felt beaten down, abused, emotionally spent, like his life mattered for little in the scheme of things?  Yep!  Nowhere in scripture is it recorded that David was any less of a "human being" than the rest of us!  He experienced emotional disappointment at the hand of friends.  His life was in