The ball comes in from the outfield; the pitcher launches it toward home plate as the runner catapults down the third base line and slides into home just as the ball hits the catcher’s mitt. The umpire throws his arms out and yells. “Safe!” Done deal. The runner is safe, perhaps a bit bruised, maybe some road rash, but safe nonetheless.
Isn’t that what the human soul longs for? A declaration of “Safe!”
The field of psychology would tell you that physical safety and emotional safety are primary human needs that must be satisfied. The soul searches the world for safety the way a hungry teen searches the refrigerator for food – never satisfied until it is found. The problem is that there is nothing in this world that could ever make us safe. Being safe is an illusion. Looking back I can see that most of my life has been made up of choices designed to somehow ensure my own safety or the safety of someone I loved. For as far back as I can remember finding “safe” has been a primary goal.
For example, I chose friends in school based on who would be safe, who would make me feel like I was loved, like I belonged. I trusted adults based on the safety factor. I spoke or failed to speak based on whether or not it would be safe to do so. I chose a husband, yes because I loved him, but love and being loved is still based upon the need to “be safe”, to have someone who would love me always, who would be supportive of me, who would never leave me, and yes as archaic as it sounds – who would take care of me. It was all about safe.
Later in life, I went to college, because I had a great desire to learn? No. Because I needed to ensure that I could be employed and thus keep my children “safe” from a life on welfare. I chose a job I considered safe. When we bought our first home, we looked for an area that would be safe for raising children. Our vehicles were purchased based on safety. We made financial decisions based on safe. Are you getting the picture? I am not alone. Go ahead and take a minute to examine your own life. It really is about being safe.
There is only one problem. As previously mentioned, we cannot keep ourselves safe. There is no way possible we can protect ourselves or our loved ones from the dangers of the world.
How then can the need for safety ever be satisfied?
And why would God create us with such a need to feel safe if it was not possible to obtain the security for which we are searching?
The answer is simple. We were never designed to meet our own need for safety. That need for safety was part of God’s grand design. It was meant to draw us close to Him because He is the only true safety we can ever experience! It sounds a bit too simple doesn’t it?
Looking back I am able to see so many walls, so many devices and habits in my life that were my designs to keep myself safe. You know what? They never did protect me. I still got hurt. And not only did they not protect me; they actually managed to isolate me from the only one who could protect me – God.
In a recent encounter with God, as He was revealing and stripping away many of my protective devices, I recall crying out – really, with tears and anguish – “God, it feels like you are taking away all of my protection!” His reply was so sweet and so simple. “I am your protection.” Oh. Right. Let that sink in for a minute. He is our protection. He is the only one who could ever keep us safe in any situation. He knows everything before it happens. He does not guess. His direction is always correct.
Wow, what a revelation. He is my protection.
God’s children do not need to make decisions based on safety. No longer is “safe” the primary goal. Now we can make decisions based on God’s direction trusting fully in the fact that He is and always will be our protection, our safety. When we are following the path He set us on, we have no reason to fear for our safety or the safety of those we love. Don’t be confused. This does not mean that you will not experience trouble. His word clearly states, “In this world you will have trouble.” It also states the He has overcome the world.
In the midst of a trying and troubling world, in every difficult situation, the child of God can rest in the knowledge that he or she is “safe”, for God is your protection.