Meditation on Psalm 46

As we take refuge from the unfolding outbreak of the COVID-19 Coronavirus, let us not just take refuge in our homes. Let us take refuge in our God. He is a helper who is always found in times of trouble. No one who seeks Him is turned away. For there is always room in Him. His soul-enriching resources never run dry. Therefore, we have no enduring reason to be afraid.

Chaos and confusion may encompass creation as nature and nations seem to be coming unraveled. Yet, God remains steady, stable, and secure. The stream of His presence continues to delight all who are found in Him for He is in them. Jesus clarifies the ultimate meaning of this imagery in John 8:38-39, “‘The one who believes in me, as the Scriptures has said, will have streams of living water flow from deep within him.’ He said this about the Spirit.” God’s presence is our refuge and our joy.

An odd invitation is extended to us in verse 8: “Come, see the works of the Lord, who brings devastation on the earth.” Some may object saying, “Only seriously sadistic people would want to bear witness to a world on fire!” But notice the objects of God’s devasting works: wars, bows, spears, wagons. These emblems of human power are where nations seek refuge when insecure and afraid. God brings devastations upon things such as these. He shatters bows. He cuts spears. He burns wagons. As the dust settles, He alone remains.

God uses times of trouble to expose alternative sources of refuge as inferior and inadequate, fragile and futile. Where are you tempted to turn in these troubled times? Are you desperately grasping for emblems of human power to settle your insecurity and fear? Are you ratcheting up your ambitions? Are you incessantly scheming to acquire more of whatever you believe is needed to feel at ease? Are you seeking to escape the chaos and confusion of these days via Netflix binges or hedonistic internet searches?

May God devastate our dependence upon any refuge other than Himself. May we redeem this time by being still and discovering afresh that God alone is God and that God alone is good.

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