SHELTERED: covered from injury or annoyance; defended; protected; secured
That definition doesn’t sound so tragic. So why is the condition of being “sheltered” treated like a tragedy? Why do certain people ignore, avoid, or mock certain other people for not knowing as much about the big, bad world as they do? The way I see it, flaunting one’s intentional exposure to and survival of society is akin to flaunting one’s intentional exposure to and survival of poison. Stupid. The minority of humans who have not run after the tantalizing forbidden fruit of this world should not be made to feel inferior for it.
Psalm 61:4 “I will abide in thy tabernacle for ever: I will trust in the covert of thy wings. Selah.”
David makes two promises to God in this verse:
1. To stay in the Lord’s house forever,
2. To trust in the Lord’s protection.
From this I infer that David was not ashamed of two things:
1. Being churched all his life,
2. Being sheltered by the Lord.
Both things a wicked culture seeks to beat out of us, to make us ashamed of belonging to God.
THERE IS NO REASON TO BE ASHAMED OF BEING A CHURCHED-ALL-YOUR-LIFE, SHELTERED CHRISTIAN.
Is this news to you? It shouldn’t be!
Psalm 61:3 “For thou hast been a shelter for me, and a strong tower from the enemy.”
Romans 16:19 “I would have you wise unto that which is good, and simple concerning evil.”
Philippians 4:8 “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.”
I think it is safe to suppose that 75 percent of Christians (including me) do not follow Philippians 4:8. If we did, this world would be an overwhelmingly different place. It is obvious from our present culture that children of God are not trusting in the covert of His wings. We are not resting with childlike faith under the overshadowing feathers of God, the roof and walls He sets for our protection and preservation. Instead, we are fretting with childlike curiosity about the wonderful world beyond God’s wings, the enticing sights and sounds that we just know we are missing.
Like Eve, we have been told that “in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.” (Genesis 3:5) We crave knowledge. We crave power. We wonder about the unknown. And we craft ourselves all sorts of gilded lies that look like truth and fool us into believing we are right and God is wrong. I have done it so many times!! I tell myself that I NEED to know, when all I need is more love for my omniscient Father and more trust in His love for me. I do not have to read that book everybody raves about. Or watch that movie everybody is flooding theaters to see. Or wear the newest trends and coolest hairstyles. Or listen to all the latest pop singers.
2 Corinthians 6:16-18 “And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.”
“Come out,” “Be ye separate,” “Touch not,”…sounds like God wants us to be sheltered on purpose, not just because we were preacher’s kids or missionary kids and couldn’t help being left out of the cultural loop. God wants us to be a peculiar people, salt and light in the midst of a corrupted and dark world.
Isaiah 49:2-3 “And he hath made my mouth like a sharp sword; in the shadow of his hand hath he hid me, and made me a polished shaft; in his quiver hath he hid me; And said unto me, Thou art my servant, O Israel, in whom I will be glorified.”
This verse has been a comfort to me in periods of my life when I felt that I was doing nothing for the Lord, that I was sheltered from all forms of normal life, that I was useless. But in those seemingly stagnant years, God was working on me. He was polishing me in His own way, not the way I would have chosen. I was an arrow being straightened and sharpened, hidden in His quiver until the right time came to be used. And if I had not been sheltered all those years, I would have been like everybody else; I could not have been able to minister. If the salt has lost its savor, it is good for nothing, Jesus said. We are chosen servants to glorify God, but we cannot do that if there is no difference between us and the unsaved.
Be different. Be sheltered. Be glad of it.