Wind, Rain, and Seeking Refuge
Reflecting on the Fifth Sunday after Pentecost: Two Days after Sunday (Year C)
Psalter: Psalm 7
Old Testament: Amos 4:6-13
Epistle: 1 John 3:11-17
Psalter: Psalm 25:11-20
Old Testament: Proverbs 19:1-17
Epistle: 1 John 3:11-17
Hear our prayers, God of power, and through the ministry of your Son free us from the grip of the tomb, that we may desire you as the fullness of life and proclaim your saving deeds to all the world. Amen.
O Lord my God, in you I take refuge; save me from all my pursuers, and deliver me (Psalm 7:1).
I’m a fisherman. I especially love to fish for bass. For several years I went bass fishing with a former parishioner named Charlie. Sadly, Charlie died several years ago, but I periodically think of those times sitting in his canoe on a lake talking theology and science (Charlie was a chemist) and reflecting on other subjects that popped into our minds while we tried to lure bass into our waiting nets.
One particular day fishing remains vivid in my mind. We were rather distant from the dock where Charlie’s canoe was anchored. All of a sudden the sky grew almost black and the wind started whipping up all around us. It was clear that a major storm was around us and we were in the middle of a lake surrounded by woods with no safe place to be. Charlie fired up the motor on the back of his canoe and off we went hoping to get to shore before the deluge struck.
We managed to get to the dock just as the rain started. We high-tailed it out of the canoe. Charlie knew of an old brick pump house nearby. We made it inside with the door shut just in time. There were no windows, but we could hear the high winds around us and the withering rain pounding on the bricks.
There are times when all of us need refuge—physical, emotional, and spiritual. No one kind of refuge is more important than another. Centuries upon centuries, God’s people have sought refuge in the presence of the one who created the wind and waves, our emotions, and our need for the spiritual, that is something beyond ourselves. To do so is not to cop out on life, to put ourselves beyond the mess of the world; rather it is what we seek to make sense of this world and to be assured that our hope is beyond ourselves who is trustworthy and true.
The psalmist affirms that God is his refuge. When the storms of life rage around us, whether those storms are physically upon us, emotionally inside of us, or spiritually working against us, is God our refuge or do we look to our own resources to battle the tumult around us?
PRAYER: God of mercy and healing, you who hear the cries of those in need, receive the petitions of your people that all who are troubled may know peace, comfort, and courage; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
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