August 16, 2015

Safe and Sound

Psalm 91

I will say of the LORD, “He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.”

—  Psalm 91:2

If you know how big and scary and difficult the world is, this psalm is for you. These are words of comfort: God is our shelter; God will cover us with his feathers spread wide, and under God’s wings we will find refuge.

Birds do that by instinct; they see a threat and spread their wings, forming a canopy of protection. Their offspring run for cover and huddle there until the danger passes.

Reflecting on the relationship between God and ourselves, the psalmist says God will protect us in a way like that. We can find refuge under his wings. Surely God will shield and protect us.

But it also happens that sometimes a threat doesn’t pass us by, and we don’t feel protected at all.

The promise is not that pain and tragedy will magically flow around us, but that ultimately nothing can separate us from the reach of our God’s arms, from his love.

We live “in the shelter of the Most High”; we rest and find comfort “in the shadow of the Almighty.” We do not fear because the all-powerful God of heaven and earth is here with us, walking alongside and in front of us and behind us, as a mother hen who will never abandon her young.

We’re safe in God’s care, and he is always with us.

Lord God, protect and shelter us, we pray. Gather us un-der your wings and shield us. Be our refuge in every storm of life. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

About the author — Thea Leunk

Thea Nyhoff Leunk has been a high school English teacher, a director of Christian education, a pastor of discipleship, and a regional coach for the Christian Reformed Church in North America. She is currently the senior pastor at Eastern Avenue Christian Reformed Church, Grand Rapids, Michigan. Thea has also written courses for teens and young adults on world religions, Christian faith traditions, and science and the Bible. She and her husband have three adult children.

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