“Come, Mama.” All she has to utter are those two words and I am up. We had decided to take my friend Leah’s advice from My Little Robins and drink up some afternoon outside play. She had ventured out from under the garage and into the driveway to collect rocks. She loves rocks. As she went she turned and prompted me to come with her. How could I say no? As she played I stood and observed her at work gathering rocks. Since it was the afternoon the sun was starting to set in the distance which made it hard for her to look at me. She would squint her eyes or turn her head. I realized while standing with her that I could be her shade. I was wearing a cape throw and tall enough that if I took the steps she did she was completely shielded from the sun. She could play freely and never have to worry about the sun being too hot or causing her any unwanted burns. She was safe in my shadow.
Standing there that day, watching my daughter play and carefully trying to keep the sun off of her I realized something, this was much like life with God.
We walk through life and many times don’t even realize He is standing over us. He quietly observes as we go about our life, but He is there and that is what matters. My presence did not prevent her from falling or require anything from her, it just brought a level of comfort to her. God is right there with us when life knocks us down. Did He allow it? Did He want it? I believe, no, but He is there to brush us off and help us up.
What does it mean to dwell in His shadow? What can life be like when we walk in His protection?
Hidden in Shadow
When we see the word shadow we can often pull up fearful images. It can be a word that can conjure strange feelings because society paints it as a bad thing. It is used for titles and themes that depict horror or fear. But is it really all that scary? Should it really be a word that provokes fear or could it be a place of resting? What if it is simply another tool the enemy has used to prevent us from knowing God’s peace?
The word shadow in Stong’s has many meanings, but looking at the term taken from Psalm 91 it means “shadow, shade; as protection.”
As the Sun beat down and the light was bright I was offering protection for my sweet girl as she carried on with her play. Had the elements proved too much, had she fallen, or had something come up to disturb her I was there. I was the protection standing with her at the ready but happy to see her enjoying herself in the rocks and dirt. She was hidden in my shadow.
God offers us this same comfort. When we choose to abide in the shadow of the Almighty (ESV) or hide in His shadow we are protected. That doesn’t always mean we are prevented from danger or hurts or life, but it means that we have a shield to pick us up and hold us. Being hidden in His shadow means walking in intimacy, seeking His Kingdom first, laying down our lives to live for Him. Eleanor had called for me to come. I didn’t just show up I was invited. God is always present around us but if we want to be hidden in His shadow we have to invite Him into our lives. We call Him in and ask Him to be our hiding place.
God doesn’t force Himself into our lives, I think He prefers to be invited.
Walking in the Shadow
It all sounds fine and good to be hidden with Christ and abiding in His shadow but what does that look like practically for us? Well, I think it looks like surrender. Living life on our terms leaves no place for His hand to move. We invite heaven to invade our lives, our attitude, our everything. Surrender is about realizing we can’t do it on our own. When we lay down the pride of trying to carry the world we pick up a humility that saved the world.
Let’s pray to surrender daily. Invite God in. Walk in forgiveness. Commit to seeking His kingdom first. And abide in the shadow.
Grab your free print below!