Saturday, March 21, 2015

The Shadows of Life

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The scent of rain swept through my bedroom window bringing with it a booming percussion off in the distance. Slipping out of bed I began the sprint to close the windows throughout the house. My sweet pup Shadow followed closely behind, his whiskers tickling my calves. It is not unusual for him to live up to his name and shadow me where ever I go, but this night he stuck to me like glue. If I turned left, he turned left. If I turned right he was almost there before me.

I climbed back into bed as the rain began and was accompanied by rhythmic thunder booms. My beloved pup did his usual pawing at the side of the bed, his request to come up. There was a time his limber legs would allow him to hop up on his own, but those days  have passed.  I dropped to the floor and wrapped my arms around his backside helping him onto the bed. He found his spot but could not relax.   Pops of lightening grabbed for his attention and caused his breathing to became a raspy pant. He slowly lifted himself up and stood over me, looking at all the shadows as they snapped upon the walls.

I lifted the down covers and called to Shadow. He stood looking out the window and then at the dancing walls. I pulled him close covering him completely with the dark comforter, careful to give him room to breathe.  His breathing slowed yet was still elevated.  With each flash of light his head popped out from under the covers.  I spoke softly while wrapping my arms around him.  As the rain began to soften, his head would drop to the pillow and his heart rate would slow, but with each new flash of lightening his anxiety would rise again.

For over a half an hour I tried to reassure him but to no avail. It was merely a thunder shower, not even a true storm. As I began to feel sleep deprived I felt frustration rise within me at my inability to comfort him. Sadly he could not perceive the situation as I could. I knew that we were safe, yet flashes of light and the shadows on the wall became a huge distraction for him. His focus had been drawn away from my comforting words, and it saddened me at how afraid he had become.

And then hit me; how patient my master Jesus is with me when I too get distracted by the perceived storms in life. How quickly I run into the arms of fear rather than faith.  How easily I can look to the dark shadows, all the while God is calling me under His comforting shelter. Under His wing I am protected from all that threatens me, real or false. And when I DO draw close to him, I can almost hear the soothing rhythm of his heartbeat. It is there that I find true rest on even the darkest of nights. Oh yes, how easily I can focus on all the shadows of life instead of the safety of the Shadow of Almighty God.  How much trouble I could save myself if I would simply would run (or crawl) into the open arms of the one who loves me like no other.

Once again my sweet ol' Shadow reminded me of God's great love for me (and for you).  I pray the next time the thunder booms we will run straight to the Comforter of our soul and pay no attention to the dancing shadows of life.


Psalm 91

Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High
    will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.
I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress,
    my God, in whom I trust.”
Surely he will save you
    from the fowler’s snare
    and from the deadly pestilence.
He will cover you with his feathers,
    and under his wings you will find refuge;
    his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.
You will not fear the terror of night,
    nor the arrow that flies by day,

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