YOU ARE MY HIDING PLACE AND MY SHEILD:
I HOPE IN YOUR WORD.
DEPART FROM ME YOU EVILDOERS,
FOR I WILL KEEP THE COMMANDMENTS OF MY GOD!
UPHOLD ME ACCORDING TO YOUR WORD,
THAT I MAY LIVE;
AND DO NOT LET ME BE ASHAMED OF MY HOPE.
HOLD ME UP, AND I SHALL BE SAFE
today i experienced sadness like i have never felt before...today i saw a broken-ness that i have become so hardened to, a broken-ness that i often ignore as i know it goes on around me. living in the city, i have seen more in 5 yrs than most people see their whole lives. i see a lost people who look to drugs, sex, and violence as an answer. i hear people brag about things they should absolutely not be proud of, and i see people neglect the things they should care for and be proud of. today we were dropping off some flyers for a big block party that is going on in kensington tomorrow. as we pulled to a red light in a very familiar area, thats when we heard it. bam...bam, bam, bam...bam, bam!!! not very loud...didn't even phase me initially. then i saw him. a young man running towards us shoving a gun into his pants. he was no more than 3 ft away from our open windows. sadness started to sink in. i knew then what the 'bams' were! i knew that just seconds ago that young man had shot several shots...but the smile on his face...it was merely a second or two that i saw him as he ran past, but in that second i knew, it was ALL OVER HIS FACE ->pure joy. he had no concern for what he just did or whomever he shot. he had no concern about my babies in the backseat or any other 'innocent' people around that he could have hit by mistake. he didn't even seem to care that so many people could ID him if they were willing.
i literally could have reached out and touched him as he ran past my window...
i immediately checked the boys just in case and we called in the cops. sadly, my reaction was not that far from the gunmans...i had little concern for whom he could have hit or if they were alive or not. all i wanted was to come back to 'my hiding place'. my house where nothing has happened since the day we moved in and where neighbors care and where we are safe. things dont happen inside and i dont have to see the ugliness of drug addicts or corpses or the trickling affect that sin has on this place.
i have only one option if i dont want fear to come in and hope-lessness to take over...i talk to my abba father. in this psalms he reminds me that he is my hiding place. he challenges me to fight off the lies of the devil and continue to obey his commands. he commands me to love the widow and the orphan, and the least (james). the life that i live here, the safe-ness i feel i have achieved or the things i obtain ->that is not living. living is being with jesus, forever! the best part is, he is sooo not done with philly! he is the god of this city, and THERE IS NO ONE LIKE OUR GOD! his mere whisper has more power than every man, woman, child, and machine on earth combined. greater things are yet to come here!!!
lord, help me not to count my treasures in earthly safety/things. help me to seek your face when i fear and fight off the lies of the evil one. continue to soften my heart to the things that sadden/anger you and help me react accordingly. lord teach me to dwell WITH you as i serve YOUR KINGDOM and lord, if and only if its your will, keep my family safe. amen.