He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High Shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress; My God, in Him I will trust.”
Surely He shall deliver you from the snare of the fowler And from the perilous pestilence. He shall cover you with His feathers, And under His wings you shall take refuge; His truth shall be your shield and buckler. You shall not be afraid of the terror by night, Nor of the arrow that flies by day, Nor of the pestilence that walks in darkness, Nor of the destruction that lays waste at noonday.
A thousand may fall at your side, And ten thousand at your right hand; But it shall not come near you. Only with your eyes shall you look, And see the reward of the wicked.
Because you have made the Lord, who is my refuge, Even the Most High, your dwelling place, No evil shall befall you, Nor shall any plague come near your dwelling; For He shall give His angels charge over you, To keep you in all your ways. In their hands they shall bear you up, Lest you dash your foot against a stone. You shall tread upon the lion and the cobra, The young lion and the serpent you shall trample underfoot.
“Because he has set his love upon Me, therefore I will deliver him; I will set him on high, because he has known My name. He shall call upon Me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him and honor him. With long life I will satisfy him, And show him My salvation.”
She was a somber girl, the color of fear. She wanted to be the color red. Vibrant. Sure. Fearless. The shadows led her. Left, right, it didn't matter as long as they could keep her from going straight ahead. The darkness whispered to her, lies and half-truths, deception, of what kind was unimportant, just as long as she was deceived. She could not see. She could not hear. And all who saw her, heard her, spent any time with her at all, thought just one thing about her: fear. She was the image of it, the essence of it. She was a breath, a vapor; directionless, purposeless, meaningless. The opposite of red. The opposite of alive. She was defeated. But for her rescuer, she would have stayed that way until her days came to an end. But...
They say fear takes up a lot of space. It takes up all the space. It takes up childhood and laughter; songs, poems, stray thoughts. It steals hope outright and plots the demise of tomorrow, yesterday, and days we would wish into being. It blinds, of course, and binds. It depletes. It wastes away. Though it could kill suddenly, it relishes in slow death. It savors the moment.
Rage won't stop it. Trying and striving and effort, staying one step ahead and locking all the doors, won't even slow it down.
But perfect love casts it out. Love in all its unmatched restoration is like a fire in front of it and a wave behind it. Love is a mighty sweeping hand that knocks it to the side and helps you up. You breathe the next breath as though it were your first. You cry, because you can not speak. Not yet. You touch and feel for the first time. Cold, hot, textures and sensations unavailable before then, before the rescuer came. There was a time before this, a moment or a lifetime of chains, but now it is all different. There is air in my lungs. Life in my eyes. I am the color red, deep within my soul I am on fire. I am raging and burning bright. I can see. And all who see me, hear me, spend any time with me at all, see it too. They ask what it is. What is that ferocious light, what is that perfect love I see, crave, what is that? And I tell them it's Jesus. That is all I have to say. The rescuer came for me! And for you.