We’ll be hearing about and getting ready for a hurricane to hit Florida for the next four or five days. It’s the kind of event that has many wondering how to be safe in the path of a storm.
Hit the road and get out of town? Shutter the windows and stay inside? Seek out a shelter made to withstand a storm like this?
We too often hear about mass shootings in public places, from movie theaters to outdoor concerts to schools and church gatherings. How can we be safe in a world where violence could walk in the door at any moment? Hire security? Keep the doors locked? Carry a weapon to protect yourself?
It’s dangerous to drive on an interstate highway. There are constant warnings about traveling abroad. Those who call or email may not be who they claim to be, trying to take advantage of us.
We will never find a truly safe place in this world. But we can find security in someone. Lest we forget that truth, the psalmist reminds us that “God is our refuge and strength” (Psalm 46:1). He is our safe place.
It takes a little faith to grasp this truth, doesn’t it? My mind doesn’t think of God as a place. He’s more like a person. But those words remind me of Jesus’ teaching, “Abide in me” (John 15:6). He calls himself a place where we can hang out. Or how about Paul’s words from Romans 8:1 “There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.” And “if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation” (2 Cor. 5:17).
Of course, those words speak of faith. But they also create a faith I can picture, where some of those threats I mentioned can’t really hurt me. Physically, sure. Life has all kinds of aches and pains and eventually death. But in him, nothing can really rob me of life. So he is a very safe place.
I try to keep that in mind when people or the news try to make me install a security system or arm myself. I have nothing against any of those things. But ultimately, he is my safe place.