‘In God alone there is rest for my soul,
From him comes my safety:
With him alone for my rock, my safety,
My fortress, I can never fail.’
A month ago, (before inflation might I add), my husband and I purchased an annual ‘Historic Houses’ membership which enabled us to view many beautiful castles and stately historic homes where we live in the North-East of England, and also where we holiday on the borders of Scotland, but also further afield … whenever we wish.
After one month, we’ve more than paid off our membership, with eleven months still to go of free visits! It’s been a super deal; and so far we’ve already visited five beautiful places in such a short time – Chillingham Castle, Bamburgh Castle, Lindisfarne Castle, Abbotsford and Paxton House.
So it’s opened up a brand-new world for us.
Before this, we often felt that entry fees were rather too expensive for the actual length of time we might have to spare on a fleeting visit, so we would view the outside only, and continue our walk. But now, having seen the inside, as well as the outside, of so many of these wonderful landmarks in such a short time, it has given me a real insight into a psalm which I read this morning, Psalm 62, which speaks of God as our rock, our fortress and our refuge.
These impregnable fortresses built on solid rock; these sturdy castles built to guard and protect life; these stately mansions filled with marvellous treasures; using stone of the best quality from either local quarries, or pillaged from Roman walls or structures that have fallen into disrepair, seem built to last! They look solid, secure and are well-fortified.
So when beset by worries or anxious thoughts or the troubles of this world, or hemmed in by dark spiritual powers that besiege us, or in need of sustenance with souls that feel empty and dry, we can flee to God for protection and reassurance, safe in his arms. We can benefit from deep reserves of living water within the walls of his protection, by way of prayer and stillness. We can enrich our dry and weary souls anew, by being a blessing to those who are already enfolded in the very heart of God, the blind, the oppressed, the needy of our world, his real treasures.
In God, our hearts, souls and minds find peace and contentment.
In God, we are strengthened and renewed.
In God we are refreshed and fed.
In God alone!
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