The Lord is a Safe Place in Time of Trouble by Lisa Hunt-Wotton
Let me share one of my favourite scriptures that I have had since I was a teenager. It is Nahum 1:7. Nahum was a minor prophet in the Old Testament and he was known as the Prophet of Comfort.
The Lord is good, A strength and stronghold in the day of trouble; He knows [He recognizes, cares for, and understands fully] those who take refuge and trust in Him.
In the scriptures before this one Nahum talks about earthquakes, troubles, storms, whirlwinds, mountains shaking, hills melting. Then the prophet assures us that the Lord (Yahweh) is good and that He is a stonghold in the day of trouble.
Today in your world, you may be feeling like the hills are melting. Things that in the past have been solid and strong may be shifting and falling. Or strong winds of adversity may be throwing you around. The prophet is assuring the people of faith that God is good and that we can take refuge in Him even when the very foundations are shifting around us.
Many people today find it hard to understand, with all the trouble in the world, that God is a good God. Yet “Good” is the consistent scriptural description of the nature and actions of God. In the Bible’s earliest revelation about God and His creative acts, the word “good” is used repeatedly.
A couple of things to remember. God created man with a free will and sin is rampant on the earth. A lot of the troubles and traumas that go on in the world today are man made and we can reap the ramifications of them for decades. The second thing to remember is that the plan of God for reconciliation, the ‘meta narrative ‘of the bible, the bigger picture of redemption and salvation is a good plan. It is often in the bigger picture that we see the goodness of God. We definitely see the goodness of God in His character and in his love toward us. Although sometimes it is not as we think it should be.
Also, God uses pain to get our attention. Suffering is the greatest catalyst to growth and transformation. But no-one in their right mind would choose pain. We want it removed and we want it to stop. Yet God often uses those situations to mature us and to make us strong. It is often in the times of distress, pain and suffering that we turn to God. This is what Nahum is saying here. That in those times, God is a haven, a hiding place, a place of safety for us to run into.
A Stronghold is a: Refuge, asylum, fortress, haven, hideaway, hiding place, resort,sanctuary, shelter anchorage, cover, castle.
Proverbs 18: 10. – The Name of the Lord is a strong tower.
The Name of the Lord indicates all that God is in himself – his character and his attributes, his love, peace, mercy, power, knowledge, wisdom, justice, truth; which allow man to regard him as a sure anchorage. These characteristics and attributes of Yahweh are ‘Good’ and we can find refuge in these things.
2 Timothy 2:19
Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, The Lord knoweth them that are his.
Finally the Lord knows those that trust in Him. Those that trust His goodness, His love, mercy, justice, wisdom and truth. The eyes of the Lord are in every place (Prov 15:3), the eyes of the LORD range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him (2 Chron 16:9).
The Benson Commentary says it like this:
He governs the world in infinite wisdom, the creatures, and all their actions, are continually under his eye, and he exercises a most watchful providence over all those who sincerely commit themselves to his care, and depend upon him in well-doing, and will not fail to protect them.
He will not fail to protect them.
I have had a very difficult life. I have faced trauma, abuse, rejection of family and friends, rejection from community, death of a spouse, abandonment, betrayal. There have been many whirlwinds and storms. The Lord has not taken the storms away, yet He has protected me, strengthened me, kept me safe, and given me many gifts.
Gifts like forgiveness, love, joy, wisdom, hope and rest.
He has definitely been a strong tower and many many times in tears and despair I have run to Him. He has kept me and held me and I am very thankful for His incredible grace and providence over my life.
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