no other shelter

I will run and not grow weary
I will walk and not grow faint
You will be my shelter
protection from the rain
and when the waters rise,
I’ll stand and sing Your name
(from Hallelujah by Preson Philips)

This morning, the Lord calls out to me, “Take shelter. But take shelter in Me alone.”

I nod my head in gratitude for the shelter God offers and then duck under the closest, flimsiest umbrella. I recognize the beauty and mystery and grace of a covering that shields from the (often self-inflicted) storm, but then stand anchored beneath my own shoddy shelter. Christ promises shelter, but He doesn’t promise it apart from Him. He is the shelter. No other covering will do.

Why do we so often cling to the promises of the Bible, ask the Lord to be faithful, demand He come through in our time of need without understanding where all those promises are revealed: under His shelter.

Ray LaMontagne (brilliant musician) aches out his song, “Shelter,” and every phrase sings broken. He sets up a desperate need for shelter in the midst of terrible relational storm and then presents his best offering: one another. It’s beautiful and my heart hurts for it to be true so Ray can find some resolve. But, in the end he stands under his own (beautifully written) flimsy umbrella, convincing himself that it is enough.

Adam and Eve, exposed by their sin and separated from the perfect relationship they had enjoyed with the Father, scrambled to find something to cover them – to protect them from the shame they’d brought on themselves.

They forgot who made them. In an instant, they forgot who loved them, walked with them, and cared for their every need. They ran from their provider and rigged up their own covering.

They ran from the only One who could shelter them, hold them, love them through the shame and provide a covering that would satisfy.

For Adam and Eve, God did something they couldn’t have imagined – shed blood. The only adequate covering for their sin and shame came by way of sacrifice. This animal sacrifice was to point to the ultimate covering – Christ Himself – who would be the sacrifice that establishes our permanent shelter under the eternal roof of God our Father.

We reside underneath the covering the Lord built by way of His son, Christ. Christ is our shelter. All that is promised in Scripture is discovered, experienced, and enjoyed under this shelter. There is no other.

Why, then, do we remain obstinate? Why do we run about, scrambling to find the kind of shelter that won’t tumble in the storm?

The Psalmist writes in Psalms 103:2,

Bless the Lord, O my soul; and all that is within me, bless his holy name! Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits.

Our short-term memory sends us searching outside the Shelter. We forget the benefit of His protection and provision and we venture out into the storm with our arms covering our faces.

With Christ as our shelter, our arms are free to raise. We don’t need to worry about being exposed or weak, for we are under His shelter – covered by His protection. We are free to make ourselves most vulnerable in praise to our Deliverer who is our covering.

under His shelter I will
let LOVE fly like cRaZy

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