He who dwells in the shelter of the Most HighPsalm 91:1-2
will abide in the shadow of the Almighty.
I will say to the Lord, “My refuge and my fortress,
my God, in whom I trust.”
Scripture testifies to the faithfulness of God. People are fickle and rebellious, yet the Lord is faithful and trustworthy. He is our refuge and fortress, faithful to deliver us. Still, we turn to inadequate comforts.
I see it in myself. When there is pain or fear or anxiety, my impulse is to seek quick relief. Maybe I will escape into a movie or football game. Or I may create an well-designed action plan to feel like I have control over the situation. Sometimes I eat an indulgent, feel-good meal. Probably Mexican food. Probably with queso. These things are not inherently bad – there are far more sinister and destructive means of escape – but all our comforts are woefully insufficient.
For he will deliver you from the snare of the fowler
And from the deadly pestilence.Psalm 91:3
The Lord alone is Deliverer. In Lent we come to terms with the brokenness of the world, and we face into our own sin. We see our need for a deliverer, intentionally denying ourselves the inadequate comforts and means of escape with typically depend upon, so that we ultimately come to depend on the All-Sufficient Savior. Lent fasting prepares us for Easter feasting. When we acknowledge the magnitude of our sin and rebellion, we more fully appreciate the majesty of our deliverance.
In the first chapter of 1 Corinthians, Paul describes the despair the apostles felt as they faced persecution in Asia. “Indeed, we felt we had received the sentence of death. But this happened that we might not rely on ourselves but on God, who raises the dead. He has delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us again. On him we have set our hope that he will continue to deliver us.”
This is the posture of Lent. He has delivered us from the deadly peril of sin and death. And he will deliver us. He is Lord of all, and He is faithful. Therefore, let us hold fast in love to Our Deliverer (v. 14).
For an in-depth explanation and guide to Lent, read this post.