“Those who live in the shelter of the Most High
will find rest in the shadow of the Almighty.
This I declare about the Lord:
He alone is my refuge, my place of safety;
He is my God, and I trust Him.”
Psalms 91:1-2 NLT
What a tremendous Psalm this is. Tradition has it that it was written by Moses, but whoever the writer was, he managed to capture wonderful and encouraging truths, just as relevant for life today as they were all those years ago. The psalm starts off with the idea that God provides shelter for those who want it, for those who live a life in relationship with Him. And in that shelter God’s people will find rest. The Psalmist continues by boldly stating that he will find rest because God will keep him safe from whatever life-issues he is encountering in his journey. And at the end of verse 2, the Psalmist simply states that he trusts God.
We think about these words, “rest”, “refuge”, and “safety”. Somehow our spirits are drawn to the idea of such places because our daily lives can be so frantic that we become frazzled to the point of exhaustion, to a point where we need to get off the merry-go-round of life and take time out. “Stop the world – I want to get off” was a phrase popular a few years ago. Most people plan to take a holiday, the thought of which sustains them in the weeks and months before they go, providing some sort of temporary relief from the stresses and strains of their situation. But when they return, the merry-go-round is still there, as frantic as ever. But God through the Psalmist points out a better way, available in the now, available when needed, available when our spirits crave rest. And after a spell in His shelter, where we enjoy the God-rest we need, we can emerge back into the world refreshed, and able to once again face into our busy lives.
Are we rest-needy people today? Look at the two words describing the place where we can find the rest we need – “shelter” and “shadow”. One tangible, one intangible. In the first case, we can physically take time out, sitting at God’s feet, praying and reading His Word. During a lunch break. First thing in the morning. Whenever we can. Thus recharging our spiritual and emotional batteries. In the second case, we can, in times of stress, look up, and “see” God’s shadow over us, through our memories, through the Words we have read, through our prayers. God has thought of all situations we are likely to meet in our lives. His loving provision is absolute. So join me today, spending time with our Heavenly Father. As the old song says, “And the things of earth will grow strangely dim, In the light of His glory and grace.”