Psalm 91:1-4 “He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, ‘He is my refuge and my fortress, my God in whom I trust”…He will cover you with His feathers, and under His wings you will find refuge; His faithfulness will be your shield and your rampart.” (Read the whole chapter of Psalm 91 for more comforting words!)
My son and I ventured out for a walk to the park today -a very sunny, pleasant day in Northern Ontario. We strolled along, Elijah enjoying the view from his wagon and me enjoying the sun on my face and the wind in my hair (along with a few blackflies)!
Life was good…until a few minutes after we arrived at the park and a thunderstorm hit. Luckily there was a shelter for us to snuggle under as we waited for the storm to pass.
As we sat there, huddled together, keeping each other warm in the chilly rain, two wonderful things occurred to me. I thought about how the storms of life are often unexpected and sometimes we just have to find a sheltered place to wait them out. And I thought about how my place of shelter is in the strong arms of God.
The geese on the lake beside the park squawked in protest to the blasts of rain, then they finally flew away, their time of peaceful floating so rudely interrupted! Just when it seemed the rain was letting up and we could make a run for home, another wave of heavy rainfall would cover the park. Sometimes in the storms of my life I’ve thought the coast was clear, that it’s safe to come out from shelter, only to have to run back into the arms of my Heavenly Father.
Once in a while lightning would strike – sometimes very close to us – I was just praying we wouldn’t be hit! I never felt that I wasn’t safe in the shelter, it’s just that lightning is so unpredictable, so focused in its attacks, it seeks out the best avenue for its electricity, the most direct path to its target – vicious when you think about it – cold and calculating!
And in the midst of the storm I also saw the most beautiful and encouraging sight. Seagulls, white and majestic, soaring through the rain, no squawks to be heard, letting the rain fall freely on their wings, unafraid of the lightning, flying high and flying free.
I watched it all from my safe and secure shelter at the park.
After a while the rain subsided, I saw a patch of blue sky and I loaded my son back into the drenched wagon for a rather brisk walk home! We enjoyed a few moments of sunshine before the next storm hit. I think that’s how it is for us as well – there WILL be breaks in the storms. The rain WILL subside. There WILL be blue skies once again. Rest WILL come.
We are free to choose how we want to live in the storms of our lives. Will we squawk in protest, run, be impatient for them to end, or fear the next lightning strike?
I would love to be like the bird, riding the raindrops, confident of my path through the storm. In all honesty my first reaction is to huddle under shelter and wait until the coast is clear. I feel so safe under my Father’s wings…