God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging.

-Psalm 46:1-3

Have you ever been stuck out in a storm?  Maybe you go out for a walk and suddenly the skies open up and water is pouring down, while thunder and lightning crack all around you.  Or maybe you’re driving your car and it unexpectedly starts raining so hard that you can’t even see through the windshield.  It’s one of those naturally terrifying situations, because you just know in that moment, that you are somewhere you are not supposed to be.

In those times we all have the same instinct.  Seek shelter!  We all want something in those storms to cover our heads, keep us dry, and keep us protected until it is safe to continue our journey.  But not all of the storms that come along in life are literal.  Some storms that we face involve not rain but tears, not thunder but heartache, not lightning but sickness.  

There is only one shelter that can protect from those storms, and that is the arms of our Father God.  The Psalm above is such reassurance because it promises that even in the worst situations, where the earth falls apart and the mountains melt away, we do not need to fear.  We know none of that can overcome the protection that our God, the creator of the universe, offers to his children.  What an amazing promise!

Discussion Questions:

1: What is a real life example of a time that you found yourself desperately in need of physical shelter?  Were you afraid and how did you react?  How did you feel once you had finally gotten to shelter?

2: Have you ever faced a time, such as an illness, or a lost loved one, that you were in need of metaphorical shelter?  Did you seek that shelter in the Lord or in something else?

3: When you are afraid, of anything, what is your first instinct?  After your initial fear reaction, what do you try to do to get your fear under control?  How has God helped to calm your fear in the course of your life, and how can that wisdom help others with their fears?

Take some time and pray together that you would always seek your refuge in God, and God alone.  Thank him for the times in the past that he has been your shelter and strength, and thank him in advance for the fact that he is going to be your refuge again in the future.  Also take some time to pray together for people around the world who have no shelter, physical or spiritual, and pray that they would find physical shelter through the people of Jesus Christ, and that they would find spiritual shelter in the Holy Spirit.



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