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20 November 2009 | Religion

God is our hiding place

Ghanaian Chronicle

As we journey through this life, it is very important for us to slow down each week and carve out time for quietness, through prayer and meditation and soul searching. And we will soon see how much murmuring and complaining will begin to fade away, how irrelevant petty differences will seem, and How big God will become and how small our troubles will seem. Security, peace and confidence will move right in.

In the book of Numbers, specifically chapters 35&36 we come across the word REFUGE. God told Moses to instruct the Israelites to create cities of refuge – 6 in all where those who inadvertently kill someone can run and find refuge and avoid the avenger. My imagination tells me that those who run there would feel a deep sense of relief and gratitude. Relief because they will not be killed and gratitude to God who in His eternal wisdom has made such a provision, I believe that these cities of refuge had all manner of people there – high class, middle class and the lower class of society. But while there, no one could really stand on ceremony and insist on social status. All had one thing in common and that one thing was that by God's grace they have been saved from sure and certain death – This is the extent of God's love – He makes provision for us to escape the certain death that comes from sin – “The wages of sin is death but the gift of God is eternal life – through Christ our Lord” - Romans 6:23.

I would therefore like to spend a little time thinking about this our God who is our REFUGE – our hiding place, our fortress, our stronghold to which we can come for peace, stability and calm:

· When the evening comes against us; · When life's pressures mount and our inner person gets very shaky. It is said that Moses penned Psalm 91 at the beginning of the wanderings of Israel in the wilderness. In this Psalm we find assurance that if our relationship with God is ultimate – very close then we will be totally protected by Him. · We will know Him as our refuge and our fortress and put our total trust in Him. Now Let Me Pose Some Questions to All of Us: 1st Question · What have you, actively done or are you actively doing to be in an intimate love relationship with God? · Is God number 2 or 3 or 4 in your life? · Are other things so important that you have neglected God to a place where you call on Him only when you need Him?

That will not work. God must be first in our hearts and in our lives. He deserves the first place – He must be our All in All. We must deliberately, and willingly enthrone Him as our Lord.

Jesus says in Luke 14:26 that unless we “hate” mother, father, husband, wife even our own lives, we cannot be His disciples. The God of love is of course not talking about hating our closest relations but merely emphasising that we must love Him deeply and be willing to leave all things for His sake. During the wilderness exile of David- when he was fleeing from King Saul - he issued the imagery of REFUGE more than any other Scripture writer. Many of the Psalms of David mentioned God as our refuge because David knew that his true shelter was God and not the numerous caves wherein he found shelter. It was Jehovah God who kept him, protected him and sustained him physically emotionally and spiritually. It was Jehovah God who comforted him and counselled and gave him grace to be humble.

2nd Question
· How has God been your REFUGE and hiding place? For us who by faith have accepted God's grace of salvation, Jesus Christ is our refuge- the Person to whom we may go to with every complain and dilemma. He is near us in times of trouble. No matter what we have done we may go to Him, seek His forgiveness and find safety in Him. No one can permanently harm us when we are in Christ and when God is our REFUGE and our Hiding Place. Jesus is the defence of our lives and we need not shiver with fear before people and circumstance. As Paul wrote in Rom. 8:31 if God is for us, who can be against us.

So how do we make Christ our refuge. How do we come to that place of knowing that He is responsible for keeping us safe? Proverbs 18:10 is our answer. The name of the Lord is a strong tower; the righteous run into it and are safe” Because He is El Shaddai- the Almighty, all sufficient, all bountiful God, He is the One who fulfils every promise of Scripture – 2 Cor. 1:20. He is a faithful God: “For no matter how many promises God has made, they are “Yes” in Christ. And so through him the “Amen” is spoken by us to the glory of God.”

He is El Elyon – the Most High God who rules over people and nations and whose strength and power no one can resist. Christ is our impenetrable shield and our protection.

He is El Olam - the Everlasting One, the God who is eternally consistent- Christ is the Stability of our life when things seem to fall apart.

He is El Roi - the God who sees. He watches over us, seeing and knowing all that happens, He comes at the right time to help us.

He is Jehovah Jireh - the God who provides all our needs according to His unlimited bounteous resources.

We can go on and on about the names of God – all of which are reflections of His attributes. That is the God to whom we may run for shelter – Our hiding place and our refuge.

3rd Question
· From what troubles have God delivered you from? - Psalm 91:3-7:10-13 & 16, and make a list for yourself. We need to intimately know this our God and receive from Him all that He has for us so that we will experience peace, perfect peace in this dark world of sin. Will you commit or recommit to Him today?

Salt and Light Ministries is privileged to invite you to a Prayer Rally under the theme “Maranatha – Lord, Come Quickly. Speaker: Apostle (Mrs.) Lyanne N.G. Koffi Date: Saturday, 28th November 2009 Time: 8:30am Venue: Offices of Salt and Light Ministries, Abelemkpe near Sollatek

You can call us on 021-772013 or 028 825 9992 if you want further information. Please remember to join us on Sunny – Tuesdays 5:30am; Asempa – Sundays 5:30am & Unique – Saturdays 7:30pm for our radio Bible study.

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