Sometimes we hear the tornado warning sirens and we know it is time to take shelter and seek a safe place to be. But there are other times in life it might not be so obvious that we are in danger. Maybe we are too innocent to understand the situation. Maybe we are too deep in some mucky stuff. Or we don’t know where a safe place is. Maybe we stumble someplace for shelter and it is really just a place where the vulnerable are preyed upon. And there we are, again; it seems we are in a hopeless place.
Good shelter, even if it is temporary, can give someone hope. In my mind, shelter isn’t just a physical structure, it is also a mental or spiritual place that provides respite, encouragement, or some level of peace and calm so the heart and mind can think and make a plan. It may provide food as well as food for thought.
A place to be heard.
A place to be cared for.
A place to be renewed and strengthened for the days ahead.
Where do you seek your shelter from these busy days? Do you have a place you like to dwell when you need a break from this complicated life?
For in the day of trouble
he will keep me safe in his dwelling;
he will hide me in the shelter of his sacred tent
and set me high upon a rock. [Psalm 27:5, NIV]
May God enlarge your view of shelter!
Do you have an Achilles’ Heel? (Side note: I broke down and used Wikipedia for this definition because it was as accurate as I knew it to be.)
“An Achilles’ heel is a deadly weakness in spite of overall strength, that can actually or potentially lead to downfall. While the mythological origin refers to a physical vulnerability, metaphorical references to other attributes or qualities that can lead to downfall are common.”
I have been thinking about times when I have been down a sinful path. Was I being rebellious? Was I scoffing in God’s face? Or was I hurting and going to the wrong place for comfort and restoration? Sometimes being vulnerable leads to rebellion. Being rebellious opens one up to being vulnerable. They are very closely related though not the same.
Do you find yourself in circumstances that trigger an ungodly reaction from you? Have you noticed vulnerable people in your life?
- The single mom who is exhausted and starts dating a guy who isn’t healthy for her–
- A fatherless daughter who dresses immodestly and throws herself into the arms of older, dangerous men–
- A stressed out teen who tries to escape the ugliness of this world through drugs and alcohol?
Do others come to mind for you? Do you cross your own mind?
Those people who come to mind as being vulnerable–Ask God to hedge them in and protect them. Intercede for them. Connect with them if that is possible. Think of the times in your life when you were vulnerable and thank God for His love and provision–it was there, even if you didn’t see it or take advantage of it. If you are feeling vulnerable, ask God to protect your heart and stop your feet from going where you should not go or doing what you should not do. Pray that God will grant you a willing heart to do His will. Is there someone who can be your accountability partner? Step out and ask for assistance.
Even if you traveled a difficult path, He can use that experience of yours to minister to others. Maybe God would like you to offer assistance to someone struggling in an area of sin you can relate to.
Check out Proverbs 4.