We all remember childhood games where there was a “safe” place. If you got to it, you could not be tagged or pursued. As adults we look to many things for security. When facing difficulty, we turn to our family, our friends, or even the comfort of our home.
In today’s reading, David was in a challenging situation. Traps had been set for him (v. 4). He was sorrowful and downcast with grief (vv. 9–10). Not only did his enemies oppose him, but he had become the object of malicious gossip (vv. 11–12). In this crisis, David describes the Lord as his refuge. God is his ultimate safe place. David knows he cannot trust in his own ability, military might, or even the strength of his fortifications. Instead, he asks God to be “my rock of refuge, a strong fortress to save me” (v. 2). He trusts in God’s faithfulness and acknowledges that “my times are in your hands” (v. 15). He knows God ultimately wants what is best for him (v 19).
Over and over in the Psalms, God is described as a refuge. This does not mean that dangers and trials will not come our way. But during these perils, we can turn to God as “our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble” (Ps. 46:1).
Jesus demonstrated this trust on Good Friday. With His dying breath, He proclaimed to the Father, using the words of this psalm, “Into your hands I commit my spirit” (v. 5; Luke 23:46). God the Father was His refuge. While Jesus would endure the pain of the crucifixion, He would be vindicated in His resurrection.
>> Do you think of God as your refuge? He is your safe place when trials come! The psalms proclaim that God is our refuge and strength both for now and for eternity. If you can draw, try to portray a refuge, a hiding place of safety and comfort.
Lord, being a Rock and Refuge does not mean You shield us from pain and trouble. Today we pray for those who are hard-pressed and angry at You for their pain; show that You are good and trustworthy, even in their anguish.