Our home place is a sacred memory for many of us. Nothing warms us like a vision of family gathered together to work, to play, to eat and sleep, and to share the ups and downs of everyday life. If our memory of home isn’t so cheery, we still are drawn to the concept of home as a place where we are accepted and valued as we are. Home conjures an image of safety and security and belonging.
Today’s scripture reading refers to God as our “refuge” and “fortress.” God is what we long for when we long for home. The psalmist tells us that in God we find freedom from fear and anxiety. We find someone who cares deeply for us and for what matters to us. When we have cultivated a deep relationship with our Creator, we find that we are able to trust, to rest, and to hope that all will be well for us.
We will all experience trouble and sorrow in this life, but we do not go through these things alone. We believe we have a loving Guide who will be with us all along our way.
It has been said that to take a general truth and make it our own by personal faith is the highest wisdom. Here is a truth we can make our own: God is our fortress, our refuge. And so we can experience inexplicable hope, no matter what troubles we face. We find our hope here: God is our home.
Whether our home in which we live reflects a Hallmark movie or brims with tension and conflict, we have the promise of a safe, warm, and welcoming home in God.
When we draw close to you, God, we can truly know what it is to be welcomed home. Amen.
While Jeremiah is in prison, God tells him to buy a field. This transaction shows that in the future life will return to normal. It is an “enactment prophecy,” where a prophecy is given through actions instead of just words. The psalmist rejoices in the protection that God provides to the faithful. God is a fortress, a covering, and a shield. Paul admonishes his readers not to fall into materialism. The love of money, not money itself, is the root of all kinds of evil, and those obsessed with it build their hopes on shifting sands. Jesus tells a parable about a rich man who has fallen into that very trap. Only after death, when it is too late, does he realize his mistake.
Read Jeremiah 32:1-3a, 6-15. How do you live as if God’s promises were already true?
Read Psalm 91:1-6, 14-16. How do you turn toward God with hope in times of darkness?
Read 1 Timothy 6:6-19. Whether you have few or many possessions, how do they get in the way of your following Jesus?
Read Luke 16:19-31. God knows each of us by name. Do you know the names of the persons in your community who have obvious or internal unmet needs?
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