Psalm 91:1 He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will abide in the shadow of the Almighty.
One of my friends who comes to church at the All Faiths Chapel will ask every Sunday that we sing Delta Dawn. Knowing that I have never led the singing of a song by Tanya Tucker and knowing my friends taste, he is asking that we sing “On Eagles Wings”. In that refrain is the phrase, “bear you on the breath of dawn” which comes to his memory as
Delta Dawn”. This is a favorite hymn at funerals. We sang it at Evelyn’s and we will no doubt sing it tomorrow at the memorial service at All Faiths Chapel.
Because of our baptism we dwell in God. We understand that God gives us multiples of good gifts that keep us safe and protected. He gives us His word, pastors and teachers, good neighbors and pious friends who remind us of His mercy and grace. How we view that protection and care is important. Luther was upset with oddballs who wanted “immediate” protection from God while ignoring the shadows all around with which God chooses to protect us. They are like the “oddball” that sat on the roof of his house and prayed God to rescue him while helicopters and canoes and motorboats sent to help were rejected. He drowned.
Here is Luther –
“The Hebrew reads: “He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High will abide in the shadow of the Lord.” I ask you, for God’s sake, why does he add “in the aid” or “in the secret place” of the Most High”? Why “in the protection” or “in the shadow”? Would it not have been enough to say “he who dwells in the Lord” and “who will abide in the God of heaven or in the Most High Himself”? Unless it is because there are those, indeed, because he sees that there will be the proud, the Jews and heretics, who would presume to dwell in God nakedly and want to be directed by God immediately, so to say, rejecting all forms of His aid and protection, with which they ought to have been directed by Him. For these oddballs want to be friends of God and be led by His special control. And so, since they made a shadow for themselves and chose the protection and aid for themselves by means of which they wished to be saved by God, they despise all other shadows and protections of God.”