Monday, March 17, 2014

Monday devo: A shelter from the dogs of night

For the last few years I have volunteered as a guardian ad litem for kids in foster care. As you might guess, many of them come from homes scarred by divorce. The situations are as unique as the individuals involved, but the kids who keep you awake at night, long after the cases are closed, are the ones dealing with physical abuse.

Tonight I was reading Psalm 59 and thought of these kids and all the kids out there -- foster kids, children of divorce, kids with married parents -- who face abuse. David repeats a refrain about the perpetrators, those who "come at night, snarling like vicious dogs as they prowl the streets." You get the picture.

But as David often does, he refocuses his attention, away from peril and toward the God who can rescue him from peril. "For you, O God, are my place of safety." "But as for me, I will sing about your power, I will shout with joy each morning because of your unfailing love. For you have been my refuge, a place of safety in the day of distress." Yes, there is distress. There are snarling dogs on the loose. But there is a safe harbor, a place where love wins, a place where joy becomes a possibility.

These are words that I hope for every child, every adult, who fears for their safety at the hands of another.  And I love that the header to the psalm says that it is "to be sung to the tune 'Do Not Destroy!'" How perfect is that?

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