Tag Archives: trust

My Shelter

Cast down into darkness, the pain of his wounds was nothing compared to the anguish of his heart.  He grieved for his lost relationship with his master, whom he had loved and served faithfully, these many years, since he was sold into captivity.  “O Adonai,” Joseph wept.  “How could my master, Potiphar believe the wicked lies of that woman?  Yes, she is his wife, but he knows what she is like!  How could he believe such a thing of me?  You know, O Adonai that I was not even tempted by her wicked ways.  Indeed, I was repulsed by her.”

He remained in the place where he had been cast down for only the Almighty knows how long, but eventually, Joseph lifted his head from the cold and dank floor, looking around in the darkness of his new abode.  As his eyes adjusted to the darkness, he saw the forms of others, imprisoned with him.  Some laughed and jested, using epithets, while others withdrew into themselves, staring blankly into space, neither seeing or hearing what went on around them.  Joseph shuddered.

“‘Elyon, You are the Most High God,” Joseph whispered softly.  “And it is in Your shelter, under Your wings that I dwell.  I will say of You, Adonai, that You are my refuge and my fortress, my God!  In You, I will trust.  You will rescue me from the trap of the hunter and the plague of calamities.  You cover me with Your pinions, and under Your wings I am sheltered.  Indeed, Your truth is my shield and protector.”

Joseph’s head snapped around to the noise of raucous laughter, as some of his fellow inmates kicked and bullied another, weaker prisoner, who tried to cover his head and his sides with his hands and arms, curling into a ball, to protect his vital parts.  Eyes snapping, Joseph arose to his full height, glaring down at the man’s tormentors. “Enough!” he spoke with all of the authority he had been given by ‘Elyon.  “Get away from this man immediately.  You will not torment him while I am here.”

The bullies looked up at Joseph, standing above them, so strong and mighty.  Then, without argument, they backed down.  He had spoken to them with such power, that none, not even the biggest bully dared to cross him.  Joseph, whispered his thanks to Adonai, as he knelt down to the man, who was still curled up in a ball.  Gently, he checked his wounds, ripping his own clothing, to bind the worst of them up.  The man thanked him profusely, and watched and listened, as Joseph continued to pray.

“I will not fear the terrors of night or the arrow that flies by day, or the plague that roams in the dark, or the scourge that wreaks havoc at noon.  A thousand may fall at my side, ten thousand at my right hand; but it won’t come near me.  I will keep my eyes open, and I will see how the wicked are punished.”

“Who is this god that you pray to?” the man asked Joseph.  “You speak to Him so familiarly, as though you knew Him.  Is He not offended, as other gods are, when you speak to him in such a personal way?”

Joseph smiled gently at the man.  “No, my friend.  My God is not offended.  He is the God of my fathers, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.  He is the living God, the only true God.  Indeed, if you will makeAdonai, the Most High, who is my refuge, your dwelling-place, no disaster will happen to you, no calamity will come near your tent; for He will order His angels to care for you and guard you wherever you go.  They will carry you in their hands, so that you won’t trip on a stone.  Indeed, you will tread down lions and snakes, young lions and serpents you will trample underfoot.

“Because I love Him, He will rescue me; because I know His name, He will protect me.  I will call on Him, and He will answer me.  He will be with me when I am in trouble.  He will extricate me and bring me honor.  He will satisfy me with long life and show me  His salvation.  He will do the same for you, my friend, if you will make Him your dwelling place.

The entire prison had fallen silent, when Joseph shared this good news with his fellow inmate.  Now, many began to question Joseph about his God, even the warden, who had come to see why the prison had become so calm and quiet.  It was clear to Joseph that God had a plan for him, even in this dark and dirty place, and with his face set like flint, he spoke silently to God in his heart, “Yes Lord.  I will follow You and obey You, even in the darkest of prisons.”

Because of his love and obedience, the Lord was with Joseph, and showered him with His faithful love.  Joseph became the warden’s favorite that day, when he brought God’s peace into the often violent prison, and before long, he put Joseph in charge over all the prisoners, and everything that happened in prison.  Indeed, because the Lord continued to shower His love on Joseph, and the prison now ran so smoothly, the warden no longer had any worries…

Beloved, even in the midst of prison, Joseph was able to not only find peace, but to thrive, because he understood that His dwelling place was in the shelter of ‘Elyon, the Most High God, not the prison where he currently resided.  Where is your dwelling place?  No matter where you reside, you, too, can have peace that passes all understanding and even thrive, as long as you dwell in the shelter of the Most High God…

© 2019
Cheryl A. Showers

Psalm 91
Complete Jewish Bible

You who live in the shelter of ‘Elyon,
who spend your nights in the shadow of Shaddai,
who say to Adonai, “My refuge! My fortress!
My God, in whom I trust!” —
He will rescue you from the trap of the hunter
and from the plague of calamities;
He will cover you with His pinions,
and under His wings you will find refuge;
His truth is a shield and protection.

You will not fear the terrors of night
or the arrow that flies by day,
or the plague that roams in the dark,
or the scourge that wreaks havoc at noon.
A thousand may fall at your side,
ten thousand at your right hand;
but it won’t come near you.
Only keep your eyes open,
and you will see how the wicked are punished.

For you have made Adonai, the Most High,
who is my refuge, your dwelling-place.
10 No disaster will happen to you,
no calamity will come near your tent;
11 for He will order His angels to care for you
and guard you wherever you go.
12 They will carry you in their hands,
so that you won’t trip on a stone.
13 You will tread down lions and snakes,
young lions and serpents you will trample underfoot.
14 “Because he loves me, I will rescue him;
because he knows my name, I will protect him.
15 He will call on Me, and I will answer him.
I will be with him when he is in trouble.
I will extricate him and bring him honor.
16 I will satisfy him with long life
and show him my salvation.”

Word of Jesus – Treasures

“Don’t store up treasures here on earth, where they can be eaten by moths and get rusty, and where thieves break in and steal. Store your treasures in heaven, where they will never become moth-eaten or rusty and where they will be safe from thieves. Wherever your treasure is, there your heart and thoughts will also be.” (Matthew 6:19-21 NLT)

English: Bernard Madoff's mugshot
English: Bernard Madoff’s mugshot (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

What a word Jesus spoke here! As I read this, I think about all of the people who lost their life savings in the Bernie Madoff scandal. For years and years, they were storing up treasures, only to find out that the one they trusted to invest their money was in reality, living off their money and investing in no one but himself. People were outraged, angry and saddened to discover they had nothing after all of those years of investing.

Now, I don’t want you to think that I don’t sympathize with these people, because I do, and I certainly don’t want you to think that I excuse what Bernie Madoff did, because there was no excuse for his lying and thievery.

However, I also have to point out that one thing I’ve learned in life is that if something seems too good to be true, it’s usually a scam. Also, while I sympathize with the people who lost millions of dollars, I’d like to pose a question. Is it possible that it was not Bernard Madoff who deceived them, but their own greed?

While I listened to people who had been cheated out of their life savings on television, I was saddened for them on a couple of different levels. Firstly, it pained me to see their hurt and fear, caused by the loss of their life savings. Where before, they had such confidence and their plans and goals for retirement set before them, now they were fearful of what the future would bring… You can make many plans, but the LORD’s purpose will prevail. (Proverbs 19:21 NLT) It seemed that their treasures were stored up here on earth, and thieves had broken in and stolen it, leaving them penniless and without hope.

This brings me to the other reason I was saddened by this scandal. Many, no most of the people I saw who were personally affected by this scam were filled with bitterness and anger, because they felt that Bernie Madoff had stolen their future and all of their hope. “For I know the plans I have for you,” says the LORD. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.” (Jeremiah 29:11 NLT) How sad to think that their only treasure was the money that they had saved – the money that was stolen from them.

Beloved, what is it that you treasure? I realize that we all need money for paying bills, buying food, clothing and paying for a roof over our heads, but did you ever stop to think of what you would do if you lost it all? Who would you turn to?

I’ve had reason to think about these very things over the last few months, since I’ve been out of work on short-term disability. As soon as I received word that I would not be able to return to work until the doctor released me to full duty, I realized that I would not be able to pay for my car anymore, so I turned it into the bank that had financed it.

My Fusion – Isn’t it pretty?

They were shocked, because I had a high credit rating, and I had never missed a payment, and they were very kind to me, but the fact remained that I could no longer afford to make payments on this car with no income. Now I have to tell you, I really liked my car. It was a 2010 Ford Fusion and it was loaded! It had leather interior, ambient lighting, sync – the works! It was the first car that I ever had that was exactly what I wanted, and I really, really, really liked it. And yet, as much as I liked my car, I can honestly tell you that I didn’t love it. You see, I enjoyed it while I had it, but it wasn’t hard for me to let it go, because that’s not where my treasure is. 🙂

The late Corrie Ten Boom once said to Chuck Swindoll, “I’ve learned that we must hold everything loosely, because when I grip it tightly, it hurts when the Father pries my fingers loose and takes it from me!” I like that, because it is true.

So now, I find myself having to trust in the Lord to supply for my husband’s and my needs, because I don’t have a steady income coming in now… But really, when I was working full-time, isn’t that what I was doing anyway? He was the one who provided me with the job and the skills necessary to do my job, so you see, my employer wasn’t the one taking care of me – God was.

And now, I really get to see how He is providing for my needs, and you know what? I’m not starving and we still have a roof over our heads. In fact, I’ve watched the Lord move people to help me, without me having to say a word about my circumstances. You see, He is my treasure, and though my circumstances seem bad, (my back is in almost constant pain and my finances are a wreck right now) He has been using this for my good. And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to His purpose for them.

You see, early on He told me that these physical issues I’m dealing with are not an attack from the devil. He is using this to answer my prayers. was the one who prayed that I would be able to pay all of my debts off (and thanks to an unsolicited gift from someone who loves me, I hope to be entirely debt free in the next couple of weeks), and this is His answer to that prayer. I was also the one who prayed for more time to devote to Him, to minister full-time and to write a book.

Every one of my prayers are being answered, so I can’t feel sorry for myself because of the pain I feel, or because we don’t have any extra money. My God is providing for all of my needs. 🙂

Therefore brothers and sisters in the Lord, be encouraged, and don’t store up earthly treasures. They will only rot or corrode, or get stolen from you. Instead, Let heaven fill your thoughts. Do not think only about things down here on earth. (Colossians 3:2 NLT)… And this same God who takes care of me will supply all your needs from His glorious riches, which have been given to us in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:19 NLT)