By Marni Montanez
1 God is our refuge and strength, A very present help in trouble.
I was struggling with what verse to send out today and in my struggle this verse came to mind. Even in what seems like insignificant or unimportant, to God, everything about us and what's important to us matters to Him.
It may not always feel that way. There have been so many times in my life I screamed out at heaven because I was in such turmoil and God who is all powerful and all knowing, seemed distant and silent. These were the times I pressed in even harder because of fear or desperation.
When I think of the word refuge......I feel it is a word that describes a covering; a protection from the storm that is raging outside. In these moments when I need God as my refuge you can bet, it's because I feel emotionally spent and need to hide inside His tender care.............. "A very present help in trouble" I know that in my trouble, though it may not "feel" like it, He is standing before me, watching and waiting as I make my way in His strength through the dark nights of my soul. I remember countless times saying to God "where are you?"
It wasn't that I didn't have faith, it was that my emotions needed to feel the security of His presence, when that didn't happen I felt forsaken and left on the side of the road. I believed for a long time that God was punishing me. But through time I have learned that in my harshest moments when the wind of trouble came blowing against me, God was and will always be right there. These are the seasons when my spiritual and emotional muscles are being challenged and I become stronger. This strength causes me to push ahead to even higher ground. it is there on the next plateau where God meets me with more intensity and clearer understanding of my purpose.
This is one of my favorite sayings.
To courageously straighten again after our hearts have been bowed by defeat, disappointment and suffering, is the supreme test of character.
The purpose of this series is to encourage people to live as loving, compassionate, and peacemaking children of God: Jesus tells us to pray, "Thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven." (Matthew 6:10) God tells us through Micah (6:8), "He has told you, O man, what is good; And what does the Lord require of you But to do justice, to love kindness, And to walk humbly with your God." And we know from Revelation 21:4 that there will be no more mourning, or crying, or pain, or death. Thus, Christian living requires us to set the standards of these conditions here on earth for our fellow human beings, and for the other animals, as a witness to the rest of the world. To do otherwise is not Christian.