It is another blustery day in Southern Ontario. As I listen to the wind howling round the house, my mind goes to how thankful I am for the warm protection of my home. In a few minutes, I will get up and begin my daily tasks, and I know that as soon as I’m not listening to the wind, I won’t even notice it any more. In fact, the only time I will actually “feel” the effects of the wind is when I choose to leave the shelter of my home and go out into it!
How fortunate I am to have a warm home. There are so many who do not. Even in the streets of my tiny town, many homeless people are out in this ferocious wind, rain and snow. You see them huddled down against buildings, trying to get shelter from the wind, with their coats wrapped around them as they shiver. True enough, the door to that building may very well be open; but it isn’t “their” home, and mostly, they are not welcomed inside.
It makes me think of God. The Bible tells us He is our fortress, our refuge, our shield, or stronghold: “God is our refuge and strength, A very present help in trouble.” (Ps 46:1); and “The LORD is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.” (Ps 18:2).
What does this mean? It means that no matter how hard the winds of strife are blowing, I can feel as safe and secure as I do in the confines of my warm home this blustery day. It means that if I listen, I will “hear” the “wind” blowing, but I won’t feel it. It means that I will only “feel” the effects of the storms of life if I choose to leave my “shelter”, my “strong tower”.
No, the winds that howl in the presence of a physical storm don’t bother me at all. Why is it, then, that I get so upset in the presence of the “storms” of life? Why am I devastated at the news of wars? Why does a job loss stress me out? Why do I worry in the face of a bad medical diagnosis? Why do I get all worked up when one of my children aren’t “conforming” to what I would have them to do? If God is truly my refuge and strength, if He is truly my very present help in trouble, if He is really my Rock, my Fortress and my Deliverer, why do I get worried and upset at all? Can’t I rely on my God in the same way I rely on my warm home?
Could it be that I am living my life outside the shelter of God? Could it be that I am huddled down with my back up against my “strong tower”, shivering in the cold and wind, when all the while, the door to that “strong tower” stands open right beside me? Maybe I don’t realize it is for me. Maybe I think I’m not welcome to enter, let alone but to reside there. Maybe I just want to ride out the storm on my own. Or maybe I don’t believe that the “strong tower” will really shield me from that storm…
Whatever the reason, Jesus calls us to: “Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” (Matt 11:28-30)
Wouldn’t it be crazy for a homeless person to refuse to enter into a warm shelter? Isn’t it even crazier that we, who are not homeless spiritually-speaking (See Phil 3:20), refuse to enter into the warm shelter that Jesus offers us?
It makes you think, doesn’t it?
Remember this the next time a wind storm rolls through your area.
And especially remember this the next time the storms of life close in around you. Enter into your strong tower, your shelter, your refuge. Give the problem to God, trust in His strength, and not your own, to carry you through. Trust in Him to bring you through to the most optimal outcome possible. Enter that refuge and stay there, for God is most certainly our shelter, our home: “The LORD is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.” (Ps. 18:2)
In His love,
Lynona Gordon Chaffart, Speech-Language Pathologist, mother of two, Author — “Aboard God’s Train — A Journey With God Through the Valley of Cancer”, Author and Moderator for The Nugget, a tri-weekly internet newsletter, and Scriptural Nuggets, a website devoted to Christian devotionals and inspirational poems, with Answers2Prayer Ministries. Follow Lyn on Twitter @lynchaffart.
(To access the entire “Blustery Day” mini-series, please click here.)