The Lord is a stronghold for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble.

Psalm 9: 9

 

This life is a battle, and its energy draining and wound inflicting combat is continuous. There is seldom a real respite. There are only brief pauses in the fight. When you need to catch your breath, or to bind up your battle wounds; if all of your energy is depleted, and you can no longer defend yourself; and in the moment when the answers to the life or death questions simply aren’t to be found, you probably feel like you just need a break from it all, a moment to catch your breath without being struck from behind.

 

This is what God is promising; this is what He brings to His people. The Lord does shelter and protect us for the time that it takes to regain strength and focus. He is the perfect getaway place, the high and secluded cliff where an enemy cannot reach us, the mighty fortress with walls so tall and strong that they cannot be breached. His place of refuge is fully stocked with all of the food, water, and medicine that we need to regain our strength and to repair our battle injuries. His words demonstrate His unending love, and His embrace brings comfort to aching hearts. Then the Lord, God Almighty, will work through the strategies that we need to enter the struggle again.

 

When we are ready to go out and reengage life, God provides us with all that we need. In Christ we already have a true victory, and through Him we know the outcome of the conflict. The battle will be costly, and the hardship and pain are too real to ignore; yet, the blood that we shed and the tears that we cry are merely reflections of those that our Lord endured in order to grant us our eternal place in the Kingdom of God. When we know Christ, we are never alone and never unprotected. When we call upon the Lord, He will always respond.