At one time, security may have seemed like a dirty word to the adventurous side in me, but now my inner gypsy is tired and looking for a home without wheels. Words like “predictable” and “reliable” have a lovely ring; they no longer seem like synonyms for boring.
This past year, I have been tearing out my hair in this ridiculous job market, trying to calm my anxiety with the promises of God or giving up on trying to calm myself at all. But recently, the long-awaited job arrived knocking, and I found myself face-to-face with a good, regular salary and the terrifying prospect of plunging into a sphere of ministry of which I know nothing. During the ensuing weeks of training, my emotions have ranged from anxious and unsure to feeling less anxious, and then back again to feeling unsure. Last week I walked out to the beach and read from Psalm 91, the waves crashing in my ears:
“He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will abide in the shadow of the Almighty. He will cover you with His pinions and under His wings you will find refuge […] Because you have made the Lord your dwelling place […]”
“I will say to the Lord, ‘My refuge and my fortress, my God, in Whom I trust.’”
It hit me again: I am always in a vulnerable state, always in need of this refuge.
With or without a job.
With or without experience and “know-how.”
With or without a husband.
With or without a circle of local friends, unpacked boxes and a permanent address.
Sometimes God can use our evident, apparent vulnerabilities or “missing things” as tangible reminders of our constant need of this one Refuge.
I stood looking over the ocean, a prayer forming in my heart. “I want to find security under Your wings. Not the wings of my experienced boss, not the wings of a regular salary, not the wings of my own “know-how” when I finally figure out how to minister to my clients.”
An old Puritan prayer from The Valley of Vision says it well:
“Let me dwell in Thy most secret place under Thy shadow, where is safe […] protection [..].
I am entirely dependent on Thee for support, counsel, consolation.
All my jewels I give to the shadow of the safety that is in Thee—
My name anew in Christ,
My body, soul, talents, character,
My success, [spouse], children, friends, work,
My present, my future, my end.”
Secure under Your wings, within Your dwelling place. Single or Married.