I’ve been thinking about the feeling of un-safety this week. What does it do to us when we experience the world or an aspect of it as unsafe?
This last, long year has seen all of us divorced from the old confidences – some more reluctantly than others – as we have experienced the sense of un-safety brought by the virus. It has, I think, been exhausting and at times dispiriting. I feel particularly for young adults just now setting out in the world, finding that it is less benign and more complicated than they perhaps thought.
We respond by working hard at doing what we can, either more or less adequately, to regain a sense of safety – vaccines for viruses, streetlights for women walking home at night, tax breaks to kick-start the economy, treatment regimes for cancer and other illnesses. But at the same time we are realising, perhaps more fully, than before that some of the things we do to make ourselves feel safe and comfortable here add to exploitation and destruction elsewhere.
It’s messy, and some days it feels as though we have no safe and firm purchase on anything very much. It is on those days that I find myself praying from the ancient words of the psalms:
I waited patiently for the Lord;
he inclined to me and heard my cry.
He drew me up from the desolate pit,
out of the miry bog,
and set my feet upon a rock,
making my steps secure. (Psalm 40:1-2)
Where, I wonder, are you looking for that metaphorical rock on which to stand?
For me, it is found in the love of family and friends, in the routine of everyday tasks and the rhythm of daily prayer, in the creation of goodness, beauty and truth for others, and in the love of God in Christ for me and for the world.
May you find yourself standing on the safe and secure rock of Christ’s love for you today.