Psalm 46:10-11 – Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth! The Lord of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge. (NKJV)
The other day, I received an e-mail that announced that the two-day conference I was to attend was cancelled. Now what was I going to do? I could just stay home, but I looked at my one-bedroom apartment and decided I would not do that. I have been going through a divorce and it has been stressful. There have been times when I have sat in the darkness and said, "Lord where are you?" "What has happened?" and before He could answer, I went off to do something else to get my mind off my problems.
As I tried to figure out what to do with two days, I decided to journey to a very special place in my pilgrimage of faith. It has been there that I have felt the closest to God, so I called to see of there was space at the retreat house in Douglas, Michigan. The pastor called to say he was in Pennsylvania but as far as he knew no-one would be there, so I quickly packed a few things and off I went.
When I arrived three hours later, the house was dark, but as I walked inside, there was that sense of God's presence. There is a peaceful, spiritual feeling as one enters into the home. Later, as I walked three blocks to the marina and sat looking out at the stars, listening to the traffic rushing by on the interstate highway, there once again, as it has been in the past, was the sense that God was there, and we talked for quite awhile.
As I sat there conversing and listening for God's response, I thought that lately I have been like those cars and trucks on the interstate — rushing to somewhere, and not taking the time to be still. No wonder I have felt deserted by God. I was rushing forward and not taking the time to come back to the place where we have met before and where I am sure we will in the future.
I am thankful to God for people of faith who make available those special places where we can come and find refuge from the challenges and ways of the world.
Prayer: Dear God, bless those people who desire to provide their parsonage to any weary travellers of faith who need a place to rest and restore themselves. May we remember, Lord, to be still, so we can once again feel Your presence and know You are our God and our refuge. Amen.