We all have issues. Everybody faces different kinds of problems. Varied trials tests even the toughest. We are on equal footing when it comes to this. The big difference lies on who we put our trust to when trials come, and when we are faced with a very big problem.
Psalm 62:8 International Standard Version
People, in every situation put your trust in God; pour out your heart before him; for God is a refuge for us.
God is a refuge for us. A refuge is something that provides shelter. A protected place. No need to explain further since we already understood this. No matter what we believe, God is the same. No matter our situation, He is our refuge. But God is more than just a refuge.
The following Psalms are great references for the many things God is. And this is just but a few. The Book of Psalm has 150 Chapters.
Psalm 27:1 International Standard Version
The LORD is my light and my salvation— whom will I fear? The LORD is the strength of my life; of whom will I be afraid?
Psalm 28:7-8 International Standard Version
The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and I received help. My heart rejoices, and I give thanks to him with my song.The LORD is the strength of his people; he is a refuge of deliverance for his anointed.
Psalm 46:1 International Standard Version
God is our refuge and strength, a great help in times of distress.
Psalm 59:16-17 International Standard Version
But I will sing of your power and in the morning I will shout for joy about your gracious love. For you have been a fortress for me; and a refuge when I am distressed.
My Strength, I will sing praises to you, for you, God of Gracious Love, are my fortress.
Psalm 62:1-2 International Standard Version
My soul rests quietly only when it looks to God; from him comes my deliverance.He alone is my rock, my deliverance, and my high tower; nothing will shake me.
Psalm 62:7 International Standard Version
I rely on God who is my deliverance and my glory; he is my strong rock, and my refuge is in God.
Psalm 91:14-16 International Standard Version
Because he has focused his love on me, I will deliver him. I will protect him because he knows my name. When he calls out to me, I will answer him. I will be with him in his distress. I will deliver him, and I will honor him.I will satisfy him with long life; I will show him my deliverance.
Listing down for clarity:
- God is our refuge.
- God is our strength. He gives strength and He is the source of our strength
- God is our shield.
- God is a great help in times of distress.
- God is our fortress. A fortress is not susceptible to influence or disturbance.
- God is light. Light is an understanding of a mystery. Freedom from confusion!
- God is our defense.
- God is our deliverance or salvation.
- God is our glory or honor.
- God is our mighty rock or protector.
- God of Gracious Love is full of mercy and compassion.
It’s important to read the entire chapter of a Psalm to see through the whole idea. There are certain requirement of action written to be able to gain the benefits of some truths. (As in Psalm 91)
- Focus our love on God
- Know His name
Psalm 50:14-15 International Standard Version
Offer to God a thanksgiving praise; pay your vows to the Most High.
Call on me in the day of distress; I will deliver you, and you will glorify me.
Psalm 50:23 International Standard Version
Whoever offers a sacrifice of thanksgiving glorifies me, and I will reveal the salvation of God to whomever continues in my way.
Jeremiah 33:2-3 International Standard Version
“This is what the LORD says who made the earth, the LORD who formed it in order to establish it—whose name is the LORD— Call to me and I’ll answer you, and will tell you about great and hidden things that you don’t know.”
However, while our loving God is full of mercy and compassion and love for us:
John 9:31 International Standard Version
We know that God doesn’t listen to sinners, but he does listen to anyone who worships him and does his will.
Proverbs 15:8 International Standard Version
The sacrifice of the wicked is detestable to the LORD, but the prayer of the upright is his delight.
Proverbs 15:29 International Standard Version
The LORD is far away from the wicked, but he hears the prayers of the righteous.
1 Peter 3:12 International Standard Version
For the Lord watches the righteous, and he pays attention to their prayers. But the Lord opposes those who do wrong.
Isaiah 59:2 International Standard Version
Instead, your iniquities have been barriers between you and your God, and your sins have concealed his face from you so that he won’t listen.
New Living Translation
It’s your sins that have cut you off from God. Because of your sins, he has turned away and will not listen anymore.
Re Sin, Trespasses, Transgressions and Iniquities – What’s the difference? (sourced here)
Sin means “to miss the mark.” It can refer to doing something against God or against a person (Exodus 10:16), doing the opposite of what is right (Galatians 5:17), doing something that will have negative results (Proverbs 24:33–34), and failing to do something you know is right (James 4:17). In the Old Testament, God even instituted sacrifices for unintentional sins (Numbers 15:27). Sin is the general term for anything that “falls short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).
The sin nature leads to trespassing. A trespasser is someone who crosses a line or climbs a fence that he should not cross or climb. A trespass may be intentional or unintentional. Trespass can also mean “to fall away after being close beside.” Peter trespassed when he denied Jesus (Luke 22:34, 56–62). We all “cross the line” in thought, word, or attitude many times a day and should be quick to forgive others who do the same (Matthew 6:15).
Transgression refers to presumptuous sin. It means “to choose to intentionally disobey; willful trespassing.” Samson intentionally broke his Nazirite vow by touching a dead lion (Numbers 6:1–5; Judges 14:8–9) and allowing his hair to be cut (Judges 16:17); in doing so he was committing a transgression. David was referring to this kind of sin when he wrote, “Blessed is the one whose transgressions are forgiven, whose sins are covered” (Psalm 32:1). When we knowingly run a stop sign, tell a lie, or blatantly disregard an authority, we are transgressing.
Iniquity is more deeply rooted. Iniquity means “premeditated choice, continuing without repentance.” David’s sin with Bathsheba that led to the killing of her husband, Uriah, was iniquity (2 Samuel 11:3–4; 2 Samuel 12:9). Micah 2:1 says, “Woe to those who plan iniquity, to those who plot evil on their beds! At morning’s light they carry it out because it is in their power to do it.” In David’s psalm of repentance, he cries out to God, saying, “Wash away all my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin” (Psalm 51:2).
Would you still want to remain a sinner? The benefits of repentance awaits those who are willing to answer God’s call. He is calling you to His way away from your way, the righteous way of God, to holiness, thru our Lord Jesus. Would you not respond now?
Written 11/24/2016 Mar Marilag