Be merciful to me, O God, for in you my soul takes refuge; in the shadow of your wings I will take refuge, till the storms of destruction pass by.                                 –Psalm 57:1 (ESV)

A member of my women’s circle shared this text with us last time we met. This verse- and this particular translation – spoke to my heart and gave me strength and courage. These words from the ancient psalmist remind us that our faith and trust in God does not take away the “storms of destruction”. Chaos and suffering and tragedy and grief are still part of our lives. God does not ever promise that all of our pain will be taken away. The promise is that we will be held, we will be given “refuge”, we will find what we need to make it through the storm. What we are asked to do is to seek shelter under God’s protective wings, held close like a mother bird shelters her young in the protection of the nest.
Many of us continue to feel a deep weariness and uncertainty, even as we move into a new year, a new administration, a new hope for vaccination against Covid-19. The political storms will continue to rage, and new strains of the virus still threaten. Let us commit to finding ways to “take refuge”. Refuge can come in choosing to make time for prayerful silence, for spending time outdoors, for acts of creativity and of kindness, for reaching out in care to those we love, for a bit of silliness and laughter (case in point: all the Bernie memes!)
May you take advantage this month of the opportunity to gather for worship, to sing together Holden Evening Prayer, to remember each other as we face our individual and collective storms.
God’s peace to you, my sisters and brothers,  Pastor Annette