Tag Archives: comfort

Finding Refuge

When you need a refuge, a safe place, where would you go?

Refuge du Maupas

We all need somewhere safe, somewhere we can go and be secure when all is raging around us, when we are lost or far from home.  A place of security to rest.

Psalm 91:1-2, 9-16

The Lord Is My Fortress

91 Live under the protection
of God Most High
and stay in the shadow
of God All-Powerful.
Then you will say to the Lord,
“You are my fortress,
my place of safety;
you are my God,
and I trust you.”

The Lord Most High
is your fortress.
Run to him for safety,
10     and no terrible disasters
will strike you
or your home.

11 God will command his angels
to protect you
wherever you go.
12 They will carry you
in their arms,
and you won’t hurt your feet
on the stones.
13 You will overpower
the strongest lions
and the most deadly snakes.

14 The Lord says,
“If you love me
and truly know who I am,
I will rescue you
and keep you safe.
15 When you are in trouble,
call out to me.
I will answer and be there
to protect and honor you.
16     You will live a long life
and see my saving power.”

God is a safe place.  A haven from the storm.  He will hold us in his arms and keep us safe.

Lord

I come to you,

for safety,

for security,

to be held tight by you,

to be saved by you.

Thank you for your arms of love,

comfort,

hope

and security

Am I Your Servant?

Two Servants, George Hendrik Breitner

You walk in here, throw your stuff down, and expect me to wait on you – who do you think I am, your servant?

You turn up here, we’ve not seen you for ages, and you expect everything to be how you like it – who do you think I am, your servant?

You want me to do that?  That’s not my way. What do you think I am, your servant?

Though I am free and belong to no one, I make myself a slave to everyone, to win as many as possible (1 Corinthians 9:19)

I like my way of doing things. I am comfortable with it, I have tried and tested it and it works for me. But however much I like my ways, sometimes you have to do it another way, for the sake of others. We should not cling so tightly to what we want and think that we miss what others need.

Paul has very much worked his way of living and his theology out – he had to, it was such a radical turnaround from where he was before.  But he recognises that sometimes he has to bend that.  He has to meet others where they are so that they can understand what he is saying to them, and see God where they are.  He is not too proud to do what he needs to, to lay aside things that are dear to him, that others may discover God.  His sole goal is that others find God and are able to share in all he brings.

I don’t know about you, but that challenges me:

  • Do we cling to some things too tightly? Seeing them as more important than people discovering God?
  • Where might I need to bend to help others?
  • Are we allowing others to find God in their place, rather than simply imposing ours?
  • There are things we will always prefer, but what are the absolute fundamentals?
  • What is God asking me to do, to help others discover him?

Lord

I thank you that you meet people where they are;

that there are so many ways for people to encounter you.

May I never stand in anybody’s way of discovery;

hold too tightly to the things I treasure

and the way I like things;

or try to impose my ways

instead of your ways

Getting Measured

They say the measure of  a civilisation is how it treats its weakest members.  Quite a measure!

Paul asks the Thessalonians to remember them by how they treated them.  He asks them to remember how hard they worked, how they lived among them, how they treated them – teaching, encouraging and comforting them.  Showing them the way to live lives worthy of God.

I wonder if we were being measured by how we treated others, what the result would be.  How would people see us?  How would they see God through us?

Lord

when people watch me,

what do they see?

When they measure me

against you,

what is the result?

When they remember me,

do they recall a life lived worthy of you?

Do I encourage, comfort and teach

your way?

Lord,

I pray that it may be so.