Tag Archives: refuge

Bible Meditation

Open Bible

Wondrously show your steadfast love, O Savior of those who seek refuge.
                                                                                    –Psalm 17:7

  • Who needs refuge? Do you need refuge? What problems, troubles, worries and fears drive you to seek refuge?

In verses leading up to this one, the psalmist said,

As for the deeds of men—by the word of your lips I have kept myself from the ways of the violent. My steps have held to your paths; my feet have not slipped.
                                                                                    –Psalm 17:4-5

  • What is the psalmist claiming about the way he lives his life? What is he avoiding? What does he seek to do?

I call on you, O God, for you will answer me; give ear to me and hear my prayer.
                                                                                    –Psalm 17:6

  • Where does the psalmist get his guidance to know what is right and good?
  • Congress is currently considering passage of the Equality Act. If it passes, the consequence will be that no business may refuse to participate in a gay wedding due to religious conviction that the business owner must not participate in sin. Furthermore, this act includes a clause that forbids the business owner to appeal to the federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act for protection against the accusation of illegal discrimination. Does this act make you feel afraid? Where will you seek refuge if it becomes law?

 

 

 

Stop and Think About the Bible

Torah ScrollTrust in him at all times, O people; pour out your heart before him; God is a refuge for us.
Psalm 62:8

One day at 4:30PM my supervisor asked me to join her in her office. I sat down expecting an extra work assignment, because two days before she had told me my productivity statistics were the highest on the team. On this day, however, she laid me off. She held me in the office till all the other employees had left. Then she told me to clean out my desk and take my belongings home. Budget cuts. I was a great employee. Blah Blah. There are rules. Blah Blah. Last in, first out. I could not verbalize my need with the eloquence of the psalmist, but I knew what he meant.

Have you ever felt as if your heart were pouring out through deep wounds inflicted by unexpected disaster? Have you ever felt that you were melting away in fear of the future? What did you do? How does the psalmist face his debacle?

Before the psalmist reached this depth, he knew that anything was possible. Life threw him curve balls, just like my experience. He got ready ahead of time:

For God alone, O my soul, wait in silence, for my hope is from him.
Psalm 62:5

How can the psalmist be so sure he can expect God in his hour of need?

He only is my rock and my salvation, my fortress; I shall not be shaken. On God rests my salvation and my glory; my mighty rock, my refuge is God.
Psalm 62:6-7

I would have felt pretty sure of things before my supervisor spoke with me. I would have said that God is my rock, but when the bottom fell out of my world, I felt shaken, not like being on a rock at all. How does the psalmist remind me that I can still trust the Lord?

I have returned to the starting point. When trouble shakes our foundations, we may feel as if we are in a swirling storm. We need to go back to the sure rock, the refuge, the place where we can hide and heal.

Trust in him at all times, O people; pour out your heart before him; God is a refuge for us.
Psalm 62:8

What will you do when you feel that your very roots are being pulled up by disaster? What will you do when the air you breathe is being sucked out of you by the vacuum you feel in your future?

My network was failing me. I even failed myself. I had believed that it was enough to give quality and quantity to my work. I could assure my own future. It was all in my own hands.

I turned to friends, but there was no help for me. I had built a career and earned every penny of my wages. Last in. First out.

Those of low estate are but a breath; those of high estate are a delusion; in the balances they go up; they are together lighter than a breath. Put no trust in extortion; set no vain hopes on robbery; if riches increase, set not your heart on them.
Psalm 62:9-10

When my world turned upside down and dumped me on the street, I had nothing. Unemployment in my county was 18%. All the sure things in my life were falling apart. I had only one assurance.

Trust in him at all times, O people; pour out your heart before him; God is a refuge for us.
Psalm 62:8

Have you experienced complete collapse? Have you watched all the supports fall apart? What did you do? What will you do?

Trust in him at all times, O people; pour out your heart before him; God is a refuge for us.
Psalm 62:8

A Verse for Meditation

God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.  Psalm 46:1

  • Nobody can see God. How do you know he is helping you?
  • Have you ever wished that you had a refuge to run to? What were you afraid of? How did God help you?
  • Martin Luther rephrased this Psalm in his hymn, “A Mighty Fortress is our God.” He called God a bulwark, a fortress and a helper. Do these words capture the Psalmist’s original thought?
  • For the Psalmist, God was real and present. What is your most vivid memory of God’s presence in a time of trouble?