God is our Refuge and Strength

A reflection as you begin the new school year:

As we enter the 2017/2018 school year, Psalm 46 provides us with an incredible reminder. It begins with the statement “God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble … therefore we will not be afraid.” And the ends with “the Lord Almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress.”

Written in a time of upheaval and war, the people of God face an uncertain and challenging future. In this hymn of faith, the psalmist, reminds them of three things in their anxiousness and worry.

The first section of the Psalm stands as a reminder of God’s protection.

God is our refuge and strength,
an ever-present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way
and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea,
though its waters roar and foam
and the mountains quake with their surging.

In the second section of the Psalm, we are reminded of God’s presence. In a place where water holds the place of deep meaning and importance, in time of instability and worry, the Psalmist reminds us that God is with us.

There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God,
the holy place where the Most High dwells.
God is within her, she will not fall;
God will help her at break of day.
Nations are in uproar, kingdoms fall;
he lifts his voice, the earth melts.
The LORD Almighty is with us;
the God of Jacob is our fortress.

Although the challenges around us seem overwhelming, the obstacles too great to overcome and the enemy just too strong, our God reminds us of His power. And in the midst of this time, He comes as a parent comes to an anxious child and says: be still, don’t worry, settle down.

Come and see what the LORD has done,
the desolations he has brought on the earth.
He makes wars cease
to the ends of the earth.
He breaks the bow and shatters the spear;
he burns the shields with fire.
He says, “Be still, and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth.”
The LORD Almighty is with us;
the God of Jacob is our fortress.


I pray that throughout this school year, you will experience the protection, presence and power of God as you serve Him, knowing that He is your refuge and strength.

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