To live in shadow usually gives the sense of evil, or bad vibes. Shadow is darkness, rather than light. But as David uses it here, shadow is also protection. To be in the shadow of, say, the walls of a fortress, would imply you are well-protected. To be under the shadow of the the king may imply that monarch’s protection over you. David calls God both a refuge and a fortress here, as well as his protection. That’s quite a statement to make considering that God is a righteous judge of sin.

We are all sinners. We have all made mistakes in our lives, mistake that harm our eternal chances with God in heaven. Were it not for Jesus, we would have no chance of ever getting into heaven. God should scare us. God’s righteousness should make us tremble. We should be afraid of Him. And if you ever came face to face with him, I guarantee, whatever your religious inclination, you would be on your face before Him as I would be. There is just something about God. Maybe it is our inherent knowledge that He is God, regardless of what beliefs I’ve been taught, that is unmistakable. Like every prophet and man of God in the Bible, we fall on our faces before Him because it is the only thing we can do. To say that God is our fortress and refuge is to say quite a thing. It is audacity.

And yet, that what David tells us he is doing. He is claiming that Divine and Holy Presence as his own Protector. He is saying that this God, the God of the universe, protects and shelters him? Who is David to make such a claim? We may say David was a man of God, but he too was a sinner in need of God’s grace. He too needed God’s forgiveness. He too received the shelter of God and His protection.

I don’t know what you are dealing with today, but this same protection is yours for the asking. You may be in a bad spot, dealing with complicated family issues, medical problems, work-related persecution or the like. But God has not forgotten you. God loves you and protects you more than you realize. There are many things worse that can happen. If 2020 has taught me anything, its that you don’t challenge the universe to see what’s the worst that can happen. There is always something worse. It is by the grace of God that we don’t experience it.

I simply and humbly ask that you give God a try before you give up. He will protect you, love on you, heal you, and sustain you. But you’ve got to give God an honest try. You’ve got to give Him your life, your purpose, your selfish anxiety. He will protect you, but only if you let Him do it.

Lord please help me today give up the right to my own destiny. I’ve really messed it up this far. Give me permission to give You the glory, and give you the reins to my life, the steering wheel to my direction. Lord I pray for Your protection. Show me what You want me to do, and grant me the courage to do it. I am weak. I am frail, and am easily distracted. Help me do all that You want me to. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

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I've been in ministry in the Christian Churches/ Churches of Christ for 20+ years. Finished my doctorate in Biblical Studies in 2015. Serve today as a Hospital Chaplain.

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