MEDITATION MONDAY: Fortressed
The name of the LORD is a strong fortress; the godly run to Him and are safe. PROVERBS 18:10
Did you ever play games as a young child that you thought made you brilliant?
I certainly did.
My sisters and I were a creative bunch. We strung skipping rope from the high deck at our old house and would play “Pick-Up and Delivery Store” for hours. We played tag and man hunt at the playground, never tiring of the constant action.
And with our next-door-neighbour and childhood best friend, we invented a game called “Dragon,” in which three kids would walk into the house, castle, and make their way up to the bedroom with the bunkbed, where, on the top bunk, the “dragon,” would scare them. And that was about all there was to it. I remember feeling genuine fear going into that bedroom to see what the “dragon” would come up with to scare us!
In each of these games, there was an element of danger, and an element of safety.
And with the danger, an element of fear– that meant something entirely different when in the safe place. In the “Dragon” game, for example, our house’s foyer was a place in which the dragon was forbidden. We always spent a few minutes there, pretending to just “explore” the castle before we knew about, or heard, the roar of the dragon.
The fortress of God is our present regal habitation. CHARLES SPURGEON
We didn’t need to leave the safety of the foyer, and it was always there. The element of danger, once we knew that it existed in the presence of the dragon, felt ominously tempting, but, while the dragon left its habitation when we kids “switched roles,” the foyer remained the same. Amidst our changing emotions of fear and excitement, creativity and instability, the promise of that loving fortress remained graciously the same.
Lord, thou hast been our dwelling place in all generations.
Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever thou hadst formed the earth and the world, even from everlasting to everlasting, thou art God. PSALM 90:1-2
Amidst any drift, spiritual, worldly, or otherwise, Jesus’ Spirit never ceases, is always great, and we can simply be readily expectant of that. This means recognizing that we are forever guarded by GOD alone (Revelation 3:3), and that He is constantly working a glorious work that brings righteousness (2 Corinthians 3:9).
I am wide awake, by the grace of Jesus alone, awing in 2 Corinthians Chapter 3.
Are we beginning to commend ourselves again? Or do we need, like some people, letters of recommendation to you or from you? You yourselves are our letter, written on our hearts, known and read by everyone. You show that you are a letter from Christ, the result of our ministry, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts.
Such confidence we have through Christ before God. Not that we are competent in ourselves to claim anything for ourselves, but our competence comes from God. He has made us competent as ministers of a new covenant—not of the letter but of the Spirit;for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.
Now if the ministry that brought death, which was engraved in letters on stone, came with glory, so that the Israelites could not look steadily at the face of Moses because of its glory, transitory though it was, will not the ministry of the Spirit be even more glorious?If the ministry that brought condemnation was glorious, how much more glorious is the ministry that brings righteousness! For what was glorious has no glory now in comparison with the surpassing glory (*PURE FACT!*). And if what was transitory came with glory, how much greater is the glory of that which lasts!
Therefore, since we have such a hope, we are very bold. We are not like Moses, who would put a veil over his face to prevent the Israelites from seeing the end of what was passing away. But their minds were made dull, for to this day the same veil remains when the old covenant is read. It has not been removed, because only in Christ is it taken away. Even to this day when Moses is read, a veil covers their hearts. But whenever anyone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.
The law of God as His covenant to His people brought glory and goodness– but it ultimately brought death and condemnation, for God knew and then saw– in that order– that His people were sinful. They could not perfect the law. They, we, needed a Saviour from the beginning of time: Jesus, precious Jesus. Who lived the perfect life in His human body and continues to live the perfect life in Spirt. A fortress to my heart, forever.
God, I trust you. I rest only in your shadow. I know that the law kills, and that You bring life. Continue to move and weave Yourself in me and that Truth in my life, that I would know where my heart resides, and then understand what is taking place for your glory and therefore my joy in that fortress; in You.