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Define Rest and Refuge
Tuesday, October 11, 2016 by Hannah S. Hunter

In the last week, I have been in discussions with some very amazing global people of all ethnic backgrounds. The subject has been rest and refuge. Everyone defines this from their vantage point and assigned place on the watchman’s wall. No one is right or wrong nor does one have the corner on how this should look.

GOD built us all so uniquely different. What brings rest to one would make another’s teeth be on edge. Some can curl up on a bench in downtown NYC and dream at perfect peace, while another needs perfect quiet dark and 70-degree temperatures to drift in sleep.

Even the definition of rest is diverse: lie, repose to stand, frame, or a support. Rest can be a stance or a state of mind so it seems!

On the other hand, refuge can be equally convoluted in definition or reality. All of us have ideas of how a refuge should look. Shelter, safety, security, asylum, or sanctuary is the dictionary’s definition.

Because our struggles, life’s journey, or current circumstances are not the same, neither will our perceived places of rest and refuge be. It is important though to know where you will achieve rest and what is a refuge fitted for you.

We all agree the world can be a scary place seen through our lenses. Instant real-time availability of things occurring as far away as space constantly are assaulting us. Overload is an understatement.

Is my retirement account enough? Is my home sturdy and safe? Do I have enough health insurance? What if my health deteriorates? None of these spell rest or refuge. Sadly, even the bride of CHRIST is bombarded with these worries.

Psalms 91:1-2 have become my food addiction. I need to eat and drink them many times a day and sometimes in the night, or I will perish or at best be ensnared. How does one dwell in the MOST HIGH’s secret place? For sure, it is not a physical place. The secret place is built and maintained by devouring the WORD. JESUS is the WORD and HE left us the written portion of HIMSELF so we have HIS image in front of us at all times for our five senses to draw on. There is something for everything—I mean everything you will ever face.

It says once we build that dwelling place we will find rest in HIS shadow. We see HIM and have the benefit of his shade from the heat and danger of the elements that would overtake us. One version says we abide in HIS shadow. We have no need to rush out to anything as we abide.

Verse two of Psalm 91 promises me that HE alone is my refuge and place of safety. How that causes me to just breathe in relaxation! No matter where I am in life circumstances or where I am on the globe, HE is my refuge and has a refuge for me.

I thought of this as I lived in drought, famine, illness, and violence all in one place at the same time. Yet HE indeed was my refuge and had prepared a refuge for me in the physical.

My prayer is you will find your refuge and rest. Then you will turn and prepare places of rest and refuge for those you are assigned to care for. Shalom!

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