He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High Shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. Psalm 91
We toured the Blue Grotto near Capri when we were in Italy in 2015, though we risked seasickness as our little boat tossed and rocked in the waves. Passengers had to duck down so the boat could enter into the cave’s small opening. Once inside, the light rippling and shimmering on the waves mixed a palette of colour that was almost electric blue. It felt other-worldly.
It’s why we vacation away from our everyday surroundings, to experience this thrill, this discovery of awesome places.
You don’t have to go that far, of course. There’s hideaways tucked all around us, a window framed by the thick cover of trees, or a secret tunnel under the road.
When our children were small, one of their favourite places to hang out was the large willow tree at the end of our driveway. Sometimes whole birthday parties of kids would perch on its branches. The long tresses of its branches were a perfect cover from any prying adult eyes.
In Psalm 91, the psalmist writes that God is his secret place, a shelter, a place to hide from trouble. God’s presence was a sanctuary always available to him. As it is for us.
God’s spirit has a light and beauty that refreshes us, gives us safety, comfort, and renewal. Sometimes when the pace of life gets to be too much, when work or relationships get snarly, we are in danger of forgetting who we really are. Jesus tells his followers to come away with him to a quiet, secluded place, to leave our cramped attitudes, to be awakened to a holy dimension and a deeper perspective.