God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore, we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging.
– Psalm 46:1-3
I was driving with my teenage daughter on another hazy day here in Colorado, the faint smell of smoke in our nostrils. “Why do you think there have been so many forest fires this summer?” she asked.
My mind drifted to a recent news report stating the Mendocino Complex fire in Northern California as the state’s largest-ever. Then I thought of the Carr Fire near Bethel Church in Redding, California. It destroyed over 112,000 acres and killed two firefighters and four residents.
I shared the only hope I could find in such a hazy, smoke filled summer.
I told her all I’d heard about Bethel Church’s efforts during the days of disaster. How a local church became a house of refuge and strength for all those who’d lost their homes in the devastating fire. Free meals, around the clock counseling, financial support, and shopping carts full of food and household supplies had been given to hundreds of people in the Redding, CA community. Volunteers, from children through senior citizens, worked alongside church staff, often on 18 hour shifts.
There was hope. Beauty would one day rise from the ashes.
This realization reminded me of additional promises of God.
The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit (Psalm 34:8).
God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble (Psalm 46:1).
The LORD is good, a stronghold in the day of trouble; and He knows those who trust in Him (Nahum 1:7).
Our help comes from the LORD, who made heaven and earth (Psalm 121:2).
All things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose (Romans 8:28).
C.S. Lewis taught, “God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our conscience, but shouts in our pain: it is his megaphone to rouse a deaf world.”
Ok God, we’re listening. Speak to us and remind us of your promises. Comfort those who mourn. Guide the lost and helpless. Provide shelter for the homeless and rain down on our dry land. We know the wind and waves obey Your voice. Bring peace and mend our broken land. We thank you for all that is good in our lives and in this world.
And we believe your word that says; If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land. – 2 Chronicles 7:14
Thank you God that your promises are steadfast and secure in every storm, in every nation, every day.
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