When the World Shakes

“In you, O Lord, do I take refuge;
    let me never be put to shame;
    in your righteousness deliver me!
Incline your ear to me;
    rescue me speedily!
Be a rock of refuge for me,
    a strong fortress to save me!

“For you are my rock and my fortress;
    and for your name’s sake you lead me and guide me;
you take me out of the net they have hidden for me,
    for you are my refuge.
Into your hand I commit my spirit;
    you have redeemed me, O Lord, faithful God…
I will rejoice and be glad in your steadfast love,
    because you have seen my affliction;
    you have known the distress of my soul,
and you have not delivered me into the hand of the enemy;
    you have set my feet in a broad place…

“I trust in you, O Lord;
    I say, ‘You are my God.

My times are in your hand…

“Oh, how abundant is your goodness,
    which you have stored up for those who fear you
and worked for those who take refuge in you,
    in the sight of the children of mankind!
In the cover of your presence you hide them
    from the plots of men;
you store them in your shelter
    from the strife of tongues.

“Blessed be the Lord,
    for he has wondrously shown his steadfast love to me
    when I was in a besieged city.” Psalm 31:1-5,7-8,14-15a,19-21

“You are a hiding place for me;
    you preserve me from trouble;
    you surround me with shouts of deliverance.

“I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go;
    I will counsel you with my eye upon you…
Steadfast love surrounds the one who trusts in the Lord.”
Psalm 32:7-8,10b

Wars explode and rumors of wars smolder, national hostilities rage, storm predictions taunt, dearth and fear and depression press in and smother. The large world, and our world- however small- shake, and we are prone to tremble. Yet God knows and reigns supreme and sovereign over all, and His throne cannot be shaken.

In the midst, where do I find refuge? Pray as the Psalmist. Take soul shelter in Him, look for His broad place. God is my refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. What am I to do? Be sober-minded, endure suffering, fulfill your ministry. Be steadfast and immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord… The Lord will be who He is and do what He does, and I must be who He’s called me to be, and stay my course. A death or setback or startling change confronts? From the shadow of pain and the shelter of my God I can securely move ahead. Standing upon my Rock merely provides a vantage point from where I refine my vision and continue to live and serve. I must not retreat or hide away, but go forth hidden in Him to explore His wide places now made possible. (Psalm 46:1-3,7; 1 Corinthians 15:58; 2 Timothy 4:5)

God holds our times, He secures the future. He is not bewildered at any upheaval that comes our way or the way of the world. What keeps me from skirting His shelter, and claiming all that His gracious redemption secures for me? Would I commit this day to bless His name, and steadily follow His ways?

Lord, may I, with confidence and gratitude, remain covered in Your presence, partake of Your stored goodness, and reflect Your steadfast love.

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