My Father's Shadow

“He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will abide in the shadow of the almighty.”      Psalm 91:1

I used to think this verse was making the case for being part of a church. If read literally, one could take it to mean that, or even that one should live in a church. Either of these things may be true.

However, I’ve come to realize that for most of us, myself included, this verse is more about God’s presence than his “palace”. The shelter of the Most High isn’t necessarily a building. But as it says later in the verse, our shelter is found under his wings, and his faithfulness will be our shield.

There is an old Jewish saying in the first century, “May you be covered in the dust of your Rabbi.” This sounds like it should be an insult, I know. It’s actually the exact opposite. The job of a disciple was to follow their Rabbi, their teacher as closely as possible. To go where they go, to wear what they wear, to do what they do, and to say what they say. Walking along the dirt roads of the ancient middle east, it’s obvious that one would kick up quite a bit of dust. This saying was a prayer to young disciples that they would follow their teacher so closely, that they would be covered in the dust he kicked up along the way. This is how I think about Psalm 91.

I want to be following God so closely in my life, that I find myself in the shadow of his presence at all times. Usually, standing in your father’s shadow would be something you’d have to see a therapist about. But here, it is where we find our refuge, our strength, our provision, and our faith.

PRAYER: Dear Lord, I thank you that your presence is a shelter. I pray that I would dwell so closely to you that I would walk in your shadow, and that your presence in my life would increase my faith today.

Erin Jorgenson