Today’s “God Calling” message assures us of God’s sheltering arms. Gos is always with us and always ready to protect and provide, and to comfort and guide us.
When I think of our relationship with Him in this capacity, I’m reminded of the relationship between a young child and his/her parent. As a parent, you are there to scoop the child up into your arms to protect it when there is danger or offer reassurance when the child is afraid. When the child is wounded physically or emotionally, you take him/her into your arms and offer comfort and understanding. You do the same when that child is weary. Your arms are a warm, safe, and welcoming place. The Bible tells of Jesus often withdrawing to a lonely place. He was, at those times, seeking the Heavenly Father’s arms for reassurance, comfort, understanding and rest. This is what prayer, communion and meditiation-just abiding in His presence do for us.
When I thought about resting in the Lord’s arms I thought about how, a young child sometimes fights against the loving and tender restraint of those parental arms. We often do the very same thing with the Lord. Sometimes in stubbornness and persistence, we want our own way. We may not see or understand an imminent danger, but the Lord is there and wraps His arms snugly around us. Sometimes in pride and immaturity we fight fatigue and soul weariness. We refuse to settle into His arms for much needed rest. But, when we are battle weary and fatigued from life’s comings and goings and all of our “doing”, the very thing we need is the one thing we’re resisting. Just as we parents do with our children, our loving and oh-so-patient heavenly Father holds us fast against our struggling and loves us through it until, exhausted, we finally settle in to those wonderful and never tiring arms and rest. Elijah did sort of the same thing. For whatever reason, he let fear get a hold on him and cause him to run. He even hid in a cave. Instead of turning into God’s arms immediately, Elijah ran, relying on his own strength. God let him go right ahead and struggle until he’d finally worn himself out enough to just rest and let God comfort (speak to) him. All the while, God was keeping him in His tender loving care-sending ravens and an angel to feed him while he was still running.
When I recall those loving arms in my own life, and recount the stubbornness and struggling against them, I’m so glad that God is God. The next time I find myself worn out and battle weary, I’m going to grab my “blankie” (praise music) and my pacifier (my Bible-particularly, the book of Psalms), and head right straight for His arms. I’m so grateful for a Father who is so loving, merciful, patient and kind with us.