God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.
This is such a good verse that we need to make two posts out of it.
It would probably do us well to spend about a month exploring the depth of these 11 powerful words (12 if consider ever-present as 2 words).
The reason we’ve come across this passage is because it’s part of our year long Bible reading plan. If you started with me on January 1, then you’re in the same neighborhood of the Bible that I’m reading right now. As of the writing of this post, I’m actually running about half a day behind. Psalm 46 was included in the reading on March 2, and today is March 3.
We have to remember, the Bible reading plan is just a tool. We use it to get exposed to a greater breadth of Scripture, but it shouldn’t prohibit us from going deeper into Scripture.
The Lord has used Psalm 46:1 many times to speak to me, get my attention, and most importantly, to comfort me. In times when the world seems to be coming apart at the seams, when it looks like we have no shelter for rescue, there is this verse: “God Is Our Refuge…”
I think back to how Moses must have felt after he had led the people of God to the banks of the Red Sea only to have Pharaoh’s army bear down upon the defenseless Israelites. He couldn’t turn to the right or to the left, and there was no use sending men with sticks and stones up against an army with chariots and armor. So what does God do? He makes a path through the sea! Moses didn’t have to create a battle plan; God made an escape path. God proved to be the refuge His people needed.
Recently I wrote about Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego and how they defied the command of the king in the book of Daniel. They could have prevented hardship for themselves if they had just worshiped the king’s idol. But fearing God rather than a mere man, they chose to be faithful to God and God proved Himself faithful to them. After Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego were thrown into the furnace as punishment for defying the king, a 4th person was seen walking around in the fire with them. The king called to them and they came out, without a hair on their bodies singed or the smell of smoke on their clothes. God was their REFUGE.
And God is our refuge. When we think all is lost, God shows us that we have “another think coming.”
We can’t always see our way to the refuge God has waiting for us. We must faith our way there. I think that statement, too, will require a little bit of unpacking, but I’ll save that for another time.
For whatever you might be going through now, or in the future, let’s keep our eyes on the Lord who leads us to that spacious place of refuge by His grace.