He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the LORD, “He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.” Surely he will save you from the fowler’s snare and from the deadly pestilence. He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart. You will not fear the terror of night, nor the arrow that flies by day, nor the pestilence that stalks in the darkness, nor the plague that destroys at midday. A thousand may fall at your side, ten thousand at your right hand, but it will not come near you. Psalm 91:1-7 (NIV)
At supper the other night, youngest son noted that the television shows from our childhood and the 1960s were much better than those of his generation. He told us how he still loves reruns of Hogan’s Heroes, MASH, and Get Smart. We started laughing as he reminded us of some of his favorite scenes. Sergeant Schultz’, “I know nothing” and the antics of Hawkeye and Pierce. One of his best laughs came from the Cone of Silence in Get Smart. He said that Summer’s new wardrobe reminded him of it. Summer is almost six months old now and that meant that she needed to be spayed. With youngest son and I both leaving for Guatemala next week and knowing that during that time, husband would also be away for a few days leaving the dogs in the care of a dog sitter, it was important that we not take any chances with her coming into season and wandering off in search of a mate. So one early morning last week, I took her to the vet relinquishing her to an assistant. Poor little thing had no idea what would be happening to her, and I felt guilty about the pain she would soon be feeling. When I picked her up at the end of the day, she was very out of it keeping me on edge until about midnight when she finally woke up and regained her zest. From that moment on, it was all about keeping her quiet. We worried she would bust her stitches open. The collar helped with that by preventing some roughhousing with Lucy. Not because it hindered her activity, but because it scared Lucy to death. We laughed and laughed every time Lucy ran away from Summer. We started calling the collar, the “Cone of Violence”! Summer was bewildered by the response and just kept chasing Lucy. It was a little like Wiley Coyote and Roadrunner, except Lucy had none of the bird’s bravado. Every time the cone pointed in her direction, Lucy cowered. Our worries were over as long as Summer wore her “Cone of Violence.” Finally after a week, we felt comfortable taking it off, and they went back to their friendly warfare with Lucy rolling Summer into the dirt once again. There’s lots more going on in my life this week besides trying to keep the dogs separated until Summer heals. I have been thinking a lot about this Psalm and how it relates to the collar Summer wore. Sometimes, we need protection from the enemy and God provides that shield from harm. But, sometimes, God steps in and protects us from ourselves like the collar which prevents her from chewing out her stitches. The images in these verses remind me that no matter what happens, I have a place of refuge away from illness, fear, or the enemy’s traps. Or from myself. God will protect me and keep me safe even in the midst of whatever may come.
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