As Hurricane Florence was bearing down on Wilmington, North Carolina, with devastating force, my daughter prepared to leave her home. She’d waited until the last moment, hoping the storm would veer away. But now she was hurriedly sorting through important papers, pictures, and belongings, trying to decide what to take with her. “I didn’t expect it would be so hard to leave,” she told me later, “but in that moment I didn’t know if anything would be there when I got back.”
Life’s storms come in many forms: hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes, floods, unexpected problems in marriage or with children, the sudden loss of health or finances. So much we value can be swept away in a moment.
Amid the storms, Scripture points us to the safest place: “God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way” (Psalm 46:1–2).
The writers of this psalm were descendants of a man who generations earlier served God but then rebelled against Him and perished in an earthquake (see Numbers 26:9–11). The outlook they share shows humility and a profound understanding of God’s greatness, compassion, and redeeming love.
Troubles come, but God outlasts them all. Those who run to the Savior discover that He can’t be shaken. In the arms of His eternal love we find our place of peace.
Amid life’s unpredictable storms, how does God give you peace? How do you intend to run to Him today?
Psalm 46 celebrates God as the only sure source of peace, joy, and courage in a troubled world. The “city of God” (v. 4) likely refers to Jerusalem, seen as where God dwelled with His people in a unique way (v. 5). The “river whose streams make glad the city of God” (v. 4) seems to symbolize not only literal sustenance but God’s continual presence bringing nourishment, cleansing, and renewal to His people. Joel 3:18 uses similar imagery to describe a fountain flowing out of God’s house. The fountain represents God’s life-giving water, indicating His provision and care for His people after the judgment of the nations. The book of Revelation also describes a river, this one flowing from God’s throne. When Jesus has fully defeated the curse of death and evil (22:3), God’s healing presence will flow to all “for the healing of the nations” (v. 2) as creation’s joy and flourishing is finally restored.