My days are busy and complex, pulling me in every direction. It’s difficult to find time even to be quiet and think. Sometimes I get bone weary and feel as if there’s no refuge to rest from the battering.
That was my situation earlier this week when the LORD led me to an image that restored me body and soul.
The biblical account of Noah’s 120 year building project is a familiar one. It resulted in the gopher wood vessel that carried the only survivors of the worldwide flood. There are many details given in Genesis, but it was one in chapter 8 that caught my attention.
“Then [more than three months after the ark landed on the mountains of Ararat] Noah sent out a dove to see if the water level had fallen below the surface of the land.”
I can identify with that dove. Can you?
For more than a year she’d been flitting from railing to rafter in a confined space, surrounded by animals of every kind and eight people trying to keep order. She’d been going through her days with purpose; eating and preening, calling out her territory and singing to her Maker. Maybe she had little ones that hatched and needed to be fed.
How marvelous she must have felt being released from the enclosure of her day-to-day routine. The warmth of the sun warming her wings as she spread them across the sky. She’d likely have welcomed the peace-giving silence and sweet-smelling air. I suspect she reveled in the adventure of her newfound freedom and responsibility.
“But the dove found no place on which to rest the sole of her foot, and she returned to him [Noah] to the ark, for the waters were still on the face of the entire earth.” Genesis 8:9a
She must have been bone weary by the time she saw the ark again. At least she’d be able set her feet on something solid and fold her tired wings. She’d no doubt be looking forward to food and water. And, if birds feel frustration, she must have been carrying a load of that. She spied Noah as she approached and it wouldn’t be long before she knew his reaction to her report.
“So he reached out his hand and took the dove, and brought her into the ark.”
Enveloped in the tenderest expression of love, compassion, acceptance, and care, the dove nestled in Noah’s hands. He carried her into the only secure refuge in a world flooded by destruction. She was safe and at rest in the hands of the master of the ship.
And it’s the same with me . . . with all God’s chosen ones as we fly to Him in these disturbing days.
“In peace [and with a tranquil heart] I will both lie down and sleep,
For You alone, O LORD, make me dwell in safety and confident trust.” Psalm 4:8
Let us rest in His sure refuge and let us also spread our wings in the plan set for us by the Master of our souls.
“Great are Your tender mercies and steadfast love, O LORD;
Revive me and give me life according to Your ordinances.” Psalm 119:156
May you sense the balance, fulfillment, and joy of nestling in the security of His hands.
at peace in His providence,
*all Scripture references from the Amplified Version