The main road route to and from the town where my wife Gemma and I now live runs straight through the middle of a wide expanse of flat, wetland meadows. Often, as you journey along that road you see cattle, sheep and horses grazing freely on the rich grass that grows so well in the well watered meadow soil.
As I drove that route recently, I was on the way to visit my Dad in hospital and my heart was sad and burdened for him. It was a particularly cold, wet and windy May afternoon and I felt sorry for the groups of animals I could see standing in the fields as I passed. They seemed so exposed to the wind and the rain.
Further along though, in the middle of one field, a farmer had placed a stack of hay bales for the animals to feed on. On the side of the stack not facing the wind I saw some sheep lying low to the ground pressing against the bales to find shelter from the elements.
I found myself deeply moved by the fleeting image of those sheep pressing against those bales of hay for shelter. I realised that the Lord was speaking to me, reminding me that I could press in close to Him as I went through the storm of my Dad being ill. There in the car as I drove, I experienced the shelter and comfort of His loving presence touching and lifting the weight of the concern and pain I had been carrying over my Dad.
Perhaps today, you feel like you are experiencing the full force of a storm in your life. Sometimes, our heavenly Father’s answer to our cry for help at such times is not to still the storm, but to call us to press in close to Him and find refuge and shelter under His wings. As it says in the Bible, ‘Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty’ (Psalm 91:1). Also the words of Jesus in Matthew 11:28 are a personal invitation to each of us at such times, ‘Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest’.
Lift your hands, lift your eyes
In the storm is where you`ll find Me
And where you are, I`ll hold your heart
I`ll hold your heart
Come to Me, find your rest
In the arms of the God
Who won`t let go
(‘Just be held’ by Casting Crowns)
Prayer: Father, thank You that You hear my faintest cry above every storm that I experience in life. I come to You now, weary and heavy laden but believing Your promise that You will give me shelter and rest. Amen.
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