When I say the word ‘Refuge’…
What does it make you think of? Somewhere safe, somewhere warm, somewhere you can hide? For me, I get this picture of a little old lady sat under a bus shelter during a thunderstorm – with the rain lashing down and the wind whistling in the air. Underneath this bus shelter she is safe and dry (and hopefully somewhat warm). Now, this doesn’t mean that the rain will stop falling immediately, or that the rain won’t ever fall around her again, but it does mean that under this shelter she is kept safe and dry, and that right now she is okay.
What is your refuge?
Is it cuddled up in your bed with a cup of tea and Netflix, or sitting in the car listening to your favourite music, or anywhere else? As much as these can provide us with feelings of safety and happiness for that period of time, our ultimate refuge is found in our God, our Father and our Creator. In Psalm 57, David cries out to God and proclaims ‘I will take refuge in the shadow of your wings until the disaster has passed’. His arms are always open, we just have to take those steps (that can often feel like giant leaps) of faith to run into them.
The hardest part
I don’t know about you, but I often find the bit before that the hardest part – admitting that I need God in the first place. It’s so easy to fall into the trap of thinking “I’ve got this; I can do this by myself and I don’t need anyone to help me”, because admitting that you can't can feel like failure, like we’re not good enough or strong enough. That is a COMPLETE LIE. You ARE good enough and you ARE strong enough; but it is by letting Him lavish his love and protection onto us, we are made stronger and safer in Him. It is completely okay to say “actually God, I can’t do this without you anymore” – in fact our Father loves it when we do. Peter 5:7 says ‘Cast your anxieties on Him, for He cares for you’. Isn’t that amazing?? The God who created the heavens and the Earth, who created the galaxies and the stars wants to live in relationship with you, and with me? He wants to love you, to care for you and to protect you, and that means purposefully making that decision every day to let him in and fully trusting in the knowledge that we can find rest in him.