Its tough watching the news these days even if you trust in God’s protection. Every bulletin seems to report on a natural disaster, pestilence or terror attack. There have been earthquakes, hurricanes, deadly viruses, infernos and floods. And how do you come to terms with a world in lock down and thousands of people dying in a global pandemic?
What do people of faith make of incidents where gunmen have fired on a church congregation, or killed members of a synagogue or mosque? Places of worship are not excluded and religious people also have nowhere to run. Tragically, innocent people die every day. How, therefore can we trust in God’s protection? How do we know He will keep us safe in a time of panic and uncertainty?
While it is true that ‘bad things do happen to good people’, that is the exception rather than the rule. Christians are not exempt from pain and suffering, however, through our faith in Jesus, we have the strength to handle anything that comes our way. As believers in God we look to Him as our hope and we have to trust in His ability to keep us safe.
We have to believe that God’s grace is sufficient in all situations. Trusting in Him is at the core of our being as a believer and that means standing in faith that He will come through for us no matter what.
Your safety matters to God
Throughout the Bible, we see God revealed as our Great Protector. One of His names is ‘Jehovah Nissi’, the Lord Our Banner. He knows our needs, including our need to be safe from anything that would harm us. He longs to help us overcome our battles and has given us the opportunity to become ‘more than conquerors’. This does not mean we won’t face danger, but that we have the promise of God’s protection and ultimate victory. Three scriptures that affirm that we can be safe in God are:
- “Many are the afflictions of the righteous, but the Lord delivers him out of them all.” (Psalm 34:19)
- “The Lord is good, a stronghold in the day of trouble; and He knows those who trust in Him.” (Nahum 1:7)
- “We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed.” (2 Corinthians 4:8-9)
Safe in God’s Presence
Furthermore, those who walk intimately with God have the reassurance of Psalm 91. This is God’s promise of divine protection to those who are in daily communion with Him.
- “He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, ‘He is my refuge and my fortress; My God, in Him I will trust’.” (Psalm 91:1)
- “Because you have made the Lord, who is my refuge, even the Most High, your dwelling place, no evil shall befall you, nor shall any plague come near your dwelling.” (Psalm 91:9-10)
- “For He shall give His angels charge over you, to keep you in all your ways.” (Psalm 91:11)
It’s easy therefore to understand why many believers refer to this Psalm as their ‘divine insurance policy’. Clearly, those who are in tune with God will hear the Holy Spirit gently warning against danger, but as with all things relating to God, it is by His grace.
God fills us with joy and gives us a sense of peace and safety not found elsewhere. His joy is our strength, His peace passes understanding and His safety is eternal.
The world is desperately looking for peace and safety but they will only truly find it in God. They may talk about having peace and being safe but this could be taken away from them in a moment. Read 1 Thessalonians 5: 1-11 which is a timely warning, but also a huge encouragement.
“But concerning the times and the seasons, brethren, you have no need that I should write to you… For when they say, ‘Peace and safety!’ then sudden destruction comes upon them, as labor pains upon a pregnant woman… But you, brethren, are not in darkness, so that this Day should overtake you...
Therefore let us not sleep, as others do, but let us watch and be sober… putting on the breastplate of faith and love, and as a helmet the hope of salvation. For God did not appoint us to wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ... Therefore comfort each other.”
Beauty for ashes
What about those who have been harmed, bereaved or devastated? In addition to being our Great Protector, God is our Great Restorer. He is the only One who can turn around the most impossible, disastrous situations and cause them to work for our good. Scriptures offering solace to those who need to rebuild their lives after a disaster include:
- The Lord has anointed Me… to console those who mourn in Zion, to give them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they may be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that He may be glorified.” (Isaiah 61:1-3)
- “And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain…” (Revelation 21:4)
- “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. “(Romans 8:28)
God’s Protection is eternal
In conclusion, God loves all people and gives each individual their fair share of talent and ability. He causes the sun to shine upon both believers and unbelievers and everyone has own particular challenges to face. We can choose to tackle these on our own or to trust in Him. As we give our lives over to God we have the strength to tackle anything that comes our way. He fills us with joy and gives us a sense of peace and safety that cannot be found anywhere else. His joy is our strength, His peace passes understanding and His safety is eternal. Let’s stay close to Him and remember the promises we have that we can be safe in God.
This article by Al Gibson originally appeared on GOD TV.com and has been updated to encourage people facing the uncertainty of the coronavirus pandemic.
Also read: How to Cope with the Death of a Loved One.