“Hear my cry, O God;
Attend to my prayer.
From the end of the earth I will cry to You,
When my heart is overwhelmed;
Lead me to the rock that is higher than I.
For You have been a shelter for me,
A strong tower from the enemy.
I will abide in Your tabernacle forever;
I will trust in the shelter of Your wings. Selah” Psalm 61:1-4
Ever had one of those days? Or weeks? Or months? Or years? Or maybe even decades? Or perhaps most of your life? When you feel like running away? When you just wish you could escape from it all? I felt like that way for decades but the Lord rescued me, forgave me for my sins, brought me into a forever relationship with Himself, and over time began to teach me to live according to His ways – for Him. But every once in a while I’ve had one of those seasons again, shorter lived, yes, but just the same, challenging. Or even just a day. A day of feeling like oh, if I could just run away. I ran for years, and this is what I discovered. There’s lots of people, places, and things to which we can run when we feel like running away, when we feel the desperate need to escape from whatever trials and tribulations we face. But there is a place, a fortress, a refuge, a shelter, an escape, a comfort, a hiding place, a strong tower like none other. One to which we can run day or night, and hide, and unravel, and unwind, and fall apart, and come undone, and cry, and cry out, and weep, and mourn, and yell, and purge our hearts, and find a hope, peace, love, comfort, mercy, and grace that nothing and nobody in this world can offer.
That place is the Lord Jesus Christ as He is the rest and shelter from this world we can have now, in this moment, and forever, when we turn from our sins and come running to Him, when we believe in Him as Lord and live for Him, when we believe He died on the cross to pay our sin penalty and was raised from the dead, when through Him we fall into the Father’s embrace, and lean back on God’s everlasting arms, and curl up in a fetal position, exhausted, worn, weary, desperate, in need, hungry, thirsty, for righteousness, for warmth, for safety, into God almighty’s shelter we can come running, under the shelter of His wings we can be refreshed, and revived, and restored, and renewed, and receive the strength, and the direction, the wisdom and discernment, the guidance and leadership, the tender, gentle, Fatherly, forever love of God.
We can run, and run, and run to the people, places, and things of this world and find temporary fleeting escape. Or we can run into the shelter of the wings of the Lord and know that no matter the trials of this life, when we belong to Jesus, when our lives are genuinely committed to Him, to God and His ways, then we know that no matter what challenges we experience, no matter how hard our lives, or even a day of our lives, or even a single breath, we can breathe in the love of the Lord and curl up in His sweet loving arms and enjoy His close company before we go back out into this world and face whatever will come next. And, when we do go back to our everyday lives, we know He is with us, and that time of being alone with Him, that sweet communing with Christ, we can carry with us the blessedness of remembering that tender time and know that it is but a little taste of the knowing that forever and ever and ever we will be in the presence of the King of Kings, the Lord of Lords, God almighty, forever and ever, Amen!