A few weeks ago, my kids—Hallie and Jack—locked eyes on a baby turtle who was stranded in the middle of the road in front of our house.
They did what most kids would do; they panicked. They panicked and strategized and gathered up their mama to cross the street and save the tiny fella from death’s doorstep.
“Turd the Turtle” is clearly the only proper name for such a creature, and chosen with love by two small people who were unaware of the unfortunate implications of his title. We watched as he shuffled around the backyard, ate a few juicy bugs, and finally wandered under the fence and into the field next to our house.
It’s been raining a bunch lately—drawing more friends out of the creek. While driving home yesterday, I noticed another lone turtle (probably Turd’s cousin) hunkered down in the middle of a busy intersection. Cars swirled all around while he remained curled up inside of the “safety” of his own shell.
A fatal illusion.
My tires missed him, but the car behind me wasn’t quite as considerate.
And I couldn’t help but think of how we often do this ridiculous thing: taking cover smack in the middle of a war zone. We find ourselves in difficult places, dark places, paralyzing places—after somehow losing track of our borders. But instead of being honest about where we are, we shove it all inside and ignore the fact that we’re in trouble.
We pick the wrong shelter.
Calling a timeout in the middle of a busy highway will do nothing but get us RAN THE HECK OVER. It does no good to pretend everything’s just fine, or to close ourselves off. We don’t need more positive thinking, more “me” time, more distractions, more self-help steps to a better life.
We need to be rescued.
To the person reading this who’s facing desperation. To the person reading this who feels like that turtle in the middle of the road. To the person reading this who needs a shelter you can count on…
Take cover in the One who created you.
Make Psalms 61:1-4 your own prayer: “O God, listen to my cry! Hear my prayer! From the ends of the earth, I cry to you for help when my heart is overwhelmed. Lead me to the towering rock of safety, for you are my safe refuge, a fortress where my enemies cannot reach me. Let me live forever in your sanctuary, safe beneath the shelter of your wings!”
Let HIM be your hiding place.
“He alone is my rock and my salvation, my fortress where I will not be shaken.” (Psalms 62:6)