The God of Heaven~Shaddia
Our shelter and rest.
A place to dwell and find protection from danger.
Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High
will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. Psalm 91:1
Part of my job is helping teens seek shelter. Teens that can’t stay in their parents homes. Maybe the parents passed away, or the teen chooses to leave, other times they are abandoning parent’s ways of drugs and violence in hopes of a better life. Countless reasons to seek shelter from the storm. To get away from it all. And yet a shelter is never where they want to stay.
It looks cold and stark. It’s not their space. It is a borrowed plot of safety offering protection and little more until they can make it on their own. I wish I could take them home, but I can’t. They face danger and strongholds I can hardly imagine. Yet I watch them conquer day in and day out. A privilege many people don’t have. I have the best view in the world. Their strength inspires me. Hearing the word “shelter” as an 18-year-old girl would have chilled me to the bone. I would have been terrified. But somehow they muscle through. Perhaps when it is the only option…your viewpoint changes.
I suppose as an adult it would be the humility of it all. Having to swallow my pride and admit that life had finally risen beyond the brims of my capabilities. Vanity, self-confidence, conceit shattered.
And what if the very same fears we have of earthly “shelters” also keep us from seeking the true everlasting shelter…
Pride, shattered vanity, conceit, unfamiliarity, uncertainty…
Oh yes Lord, I want your shelter, but please don’t make it evident. I don’t want anyone to know I am staying here. Can’t we just make it look like I could handle things on my own? We will keep these prayers and silent sorrows just between us. I would rather plaster on this mask of a smile than for anyone to know I can’t handle it on my own.
It seems like seeking shelter with God would be an honor but I smolder, even at times with anger, over my fragile humanity….as if living a life dependent on him is somehow something I never desired to do.
And a heart shattered, knee bent soul says, “I want to dwell with you Lord.”
Arrogant flesh declares, “You are so weak. You are unstable. Why can’t you do this on your own. You are a failure.”
God of Heaven, Commander of the Angel Armies, how could You even invite me to dwell with you? My cold hard heart swims away. But yet I call again, and You still reply. What kind of love is this? The love a Father has for His daughters and sons. Shelter in the Most High. Amidst the God of the Heavens. Yes, I will seek shelter with You and will not be ashamed of my address. My once temporary safe spot now made a permanent dwelling. Infiltrate my heart and mind so less of me becomes more of You. In You alone God…that will be my only shelter…my only trust. My hope found. My stable place, the only place I will stand.