Summer Selah: God’s Protective Embrace

Ross Lester | July 16, 2021 Christian Living Faith, Rest, Sabbath, Spiritual, Summer Selah Series

Summer ought to be a season when we’re able to rest well—a time we can spend with the Lord and His goodness. But, oftentimes, we actually fall out of healthy spiritual habits and end up trying to rest from the Lord instead of resting in Him.

That’s why we’ve created the Summer Selah Series. Over 40 days, we’ll be sharing daily devotions during a season where you may not feel very devoted.

Based on excerpts from his book Selah: Devotions From The Psalms For Those Who Struggle With Devotion, Ross Lester, our Pastor of Preaching and West Congregation Pastor, will provide readings from select Psalms, a brief devotional reflection, and some prayer points for each of the 40 days.

Reading

Take some time to read Psalm 91. Then, come back and read the following verse again.

“He will cover you with his feathers,
and under his wings you will find refuge;
his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.” (Psalm 91:4 NIV)

Reflection

I like playing golf. I know it seems like a foolish pursuit for someone with an eternal perspective, but I just like the game. It reminds me how much I need Jesus—it humbles me with each and every misdirected blow and there are usually many of those. I normally come home from golf knowing full well where I fit in the universe—near the bottom of the pecking order.

A few years ago, I was playing golf at one of my favorite courses. I smashed a drive on a Par 5, but I smashed it into an area of the course where no human had ever set foot. It was a long way off course, but I was determined to find it. I was half expecting to find Dr. Livingstone hiding out in the area I had to trek though. I found my ball, but as I walked towards it thinking of the incredible recovery shot I was going to make, I got viciously attacked. I thought the end had come. I couldn’t tell what happened at first, but after my initial panic settled, I realized that I was simply encountering something that many Johannesburg residents encounter every day. A Blacksmith Lapwing bird was dive-bombing me because I had unwittingly gotten too close to a nest. After several frantic swipes with a 7 iron, I managed to get myself out of the danger zone of this admittedly tiny but ferocious bird and I was able to look back on my ruthless attacker. I saw it, standing in its nest, with its wings outstretched, covering its young.

My heart broke.

My mind went straight to Psalm 91.

This pose of a fearless and loving defender bird is how Moses described the posture of God over His children. It is said that Moses wrote this Psalm as the Israelites entered the desert and Moses knew that there was trouble ahead for them, but his picture of God was the picture of a bird protecting his young. Fearlessly, selflessly, sacrificially defending and protecting. What a picture.

I needed that picture again today. Maybe you did too.

Prayer

Father God, thank You that You stand in protection over me. Teach me to trust in Your goodness. Cover me with Your wings.


Ross Lester, Selah: Devotions From The Psalms For Those Who Struggle With Devotion (Magnolia, Texas: Lucid Books, 2017)