“Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say to the Lord, ‘He is my refuge and my fortress, my God in whom I trust.’ Surely he will save you from the fowlers 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.” Psalm 91:1-4 (NIV)
It is nearly midnight. I stare blankly at my screen, struggling to find the encouraging words that I want to say to you in the midst of great anxiety and uncertainty around COVID-19. My almost one year old child begins to cry for me and I once again have to leave my desk to care for him. I often find when caring for my children in the depths of the night (and sleep deprivation) that God uses this time as “thin space” or “holy ground,” to help me deepen my walk and grow closer to my Creator God as I hold my own created gifts from heaven. While rocking my son closely, I am reminded of God’s love for us as a heavenly parent. My beloved child knows that if he cries for me, I will come, every time. If he is cold, I will give him a blanket. If he is hungry or in pain, I will give him relief. It is my responsibility as his parent to protect him from the elements and ensure that he is cared for every day of his precious life. Similarly, God’s love is actively responding to our needs and protecting us like a mother eagle who covers her chicks with the shield of her feathers. It is a love that shadows us in the folds of grace.
During this time of pandemic desperation, like my child, I too am longing to be held in the protection of God’s arms during this season of unknown. I cry out, begging for some small bit of sustenance to get me through the night that has come upon us. God’s grace for the moment is my serving of daily bread and allows me to navigate through these uncharted waters. Yet, I am reminded that in these times of great adversity, we are truly challenged to identify the One in whom we will put our trust. We do not put our faith in earthly things that can be taken away, but instead we put our Hope in God who provides all things for us. Like a heavenly parent, God comes through when we cry out and ensures we are protected from the storm like a refuge for the night.
Through the grace of God, Micah is serving as a refuge for our most vulnerable neighbors in this time. Right now, our neighbors are feeling anxious. They are watching everything they are used to relying on for social and physical support closing around them daily. However, one thing that remains consistent, are the services received through Micah. We are incredibly grateful that our network churches and volunteers have ensured our guests are being fed, clothed, bathed and loved every day of the week. This is the work of the body of Christ, unified under one Spirit. While we have had to make necessary adjustments to protect the health and safety of our population, we will ensure that Micah remains open throughout this period of confinement to ensure that our brothers and sisters are cared for while we ride out this unprecedented pestilence that is COVID-19.
While we may be working through our own temptations to hoard and go into survival mode, may we remember that we believe in a God who is our caretaker. Let us take note from the birds in the air and the lilies in the field, they neither toil nor reap and sow, because they know that the great I AM will provide (Matthew 6:26-28). God is the refuge we seek from the noise and paranoia. Put your trust in God’s faithfulness and help us to serve as a lighthouse for our most vulnerable neighbors to make it safely through this storm.
If you would like to volunteer your time or resources to Micah Ecumenical Ministries, please apply through our volunteer portal request at www.dolovewalk.net or your can email [email protected]. There are ways you can help and get connected today!
Blog written by: Chelsea Morse
Chelsea is one of the newest staff members at Micah serving as their Community Engagement Navigator. Chelsea is a Seminarian at Union Presbyterian Seminary in Richmond Virginia, hoping to obtain her Masters of Divinity (M.Div) by spring of 2021. She is a pastoral candidate within the United Methodist Church and a member of FUMC here in downtown Fredericksburg. Chelsea is married and a mother of two beautiful boys.