With my sister Holly’s cancer getting worse, I’ve been reading through some of the Psalms. This morning I came across these verses from Psalm 55. (ESV)
4 My heart is in anguish within me;
the terrors of death have fallen upon me.
5 Fear and trembling come upon me,
and horror overwhelms me.
6 And I say, “Oh, that I had wings like a dove!
I would fly away and be at rest;
7 yes, I would wander far away;
I would lodge in the wilderness; Selah
8 I would hurry to find a shelter
from the raging wind and tempest.”
This resonates with me. I would rather not think about it. I would rather run away. Replace “oh, that I had wings like a dove” with “oh that I had a full tank of gas and nothing tying me down”. Ignoring Holly’s sickness won’t make it go away. I can’t run away or ignore this… And it wouldn’t help if I did.
The psalmist doesn’t find the answer in running away either.
16 But I call to God,
and the Lord will save me.
17 Evening and morning and at noon
I utter my complaint and moan,
and he hears my voice.
18 He redeems my soul in safety
from the battle that I wage,
for many are arrayed against me.
Running may be the correct response, but I need to learn to run to God. He is a greater refuge than any wilderness hideout could ever be. You might say that when we run to Him, He provides us with wings like a dove so we can escape. Even wings like an eagle!
The rest of the Psalm doesn’t directly relate as it talks about being betrayed by a friend and running away to the wilderness to hide from actual enemies, but the principle is the same.
Near the end it has this encouraging verse:
22 Cast your burden on the Lord,
and he will sustain you;
he will never permit
the righteous to be moved.