“You just don’t understand me.”

“Why do you see me that way? It is not who I am!”

“All I want to is for someone to put their arms around me, to hug me, to love me, to help me know that I am not alone!”

“I hate being in the shadows…”

Shadows…of pain, hurt, rejection, despair, loneliness, and hopelessness. They are places of fear, places of pain remembered, places of darkness, places that we often don’t want to be.

A son in his father’s shadow.

A daughter in her mother’s shadow.

An apprentice in the shadow of their master.

An athlete who just doesn’t measure up.

A student who can’t quite muster up the grades.

A mom that feels pulled in a million directions.

A father who has lost the sense of purpose.

This morning, through pain, through questions, through the unknown, through all the shadows… There is a shadow that is safe and not painful. There is shadow where peace and comfort and joy and love and hope reside. There is a shadow that is not tempting to try to overcome. There is a shadow that is place of rest and wisdom.

Where is this shadow? I’m glad you asked…

Psalm 91:1-13 (MSG)

1-13 You who sit down in the High God’s presence,
    spend the night in the Almighty’s shadow,
Say this: “God, you’re my refuge.
    I trust in you and I’m safe!”
That’s right—he rescues you from hidden traps,
    shields you from deadly hazards.
His huge outstretched arms protect you—
    under them you’re perfectly safe;
    his arms fend off all harm.
Fear nothing—not wild wolves in the night,
    not flying arrows in the day,
Not disease that prowls through the darkness,
    not disaster that erupts at high noon.
Even though others succumb all around,
    drop like flies right and left,
    no harm will even graze you.
You’ll stand untouched, watch it all from a distance,
    watch the wicked turn into corpses.
Yes, because God’s your refuge,
    the High God your very own home,
Evil can’t get close to you,
    harm can’t get through the door.
He ordered his angels
    to guard you wherever you go.
If you stumble, they’ll catch you;
    their job is to keep you from falling.
You’ll walk unharmed among lions and snakes,
    and kick young lions and serpents from the path

14-16“If you’ll hold on to me for dear life,” says God,
     “I’ll get you out of any trouble.
I’ll give you the best of care
     if you’ll only get to know and trust me.
Call me and I’ll answer, be at your side in bad times;
     I’ll rescue you, then throw you a party.
I’ll give you a long life,
    give you a long drink of salvation!”

Today, I am walking through my own questions as to the shadows in my life. I am sure you are as well. I believe that the answer to our shadows is not our quest for more authority, more gifts, more talent, more influence, more money, more of whatever you and I feel meets the void. Our answer to the shadows that we fight so desperately to get out from under, is the shadow of the Almighty God!

So will you join me in finding Rest for you, Peace for the journey, and Love from your Heavenly Father in this shadow, in His Shadow…