Riverside Community Church

Elohim Makhasehlanu God our Refuge

(El o heem May haas la^ new)

At the risk of irritating you I am going to repeat a statement 7X (perfect number) but I ‘ll say it somewhat differently each time. I will state a negative than a positive and give a positive solution to that negative.

There is no problem that can overwhelm you when you have THE Refuge

God is our Refuge (El o heem May haas la^ new) so go to your Refuge.

There is no enemy that can defeat you when you have THE Refuge

God is our Refuge (El o heem May haas la^ new) so go to your Refuge.

There is no trouble that can overpower you when you have THE Refuge

God is our Refuge (El o heem May haas la^ new) so go to your Refuge.

There is no crisis that can devastate you when you have THE Refuge

God is our Refuge (El o heem May haas la^ new) so go to your Refuge.

There is no dilemma that can destroy you when you have THE Refuge

God is our Refuge (El o heem May haas la^ new) so go to your Refuge.

There is no quandary that can ruin you when you have THE Refuge

God is our Refuge (El o heem May haas la^ new) so go to your Refuge.

There is no predicament that can conquer u when you have THE Refuge

God is our Refuge (El o heem May haas la^ new) so go to your Refuge.




Did you know that in 2019, the beginning of Covid, 70,000 people applied for refuge, formally called asylum, in Canada. That number dropped to 32,000 in 2021, people from places all over the world sought refuge here, in Canada.

Definition of Refuge

As a noun

It is a condition of being safe or sheltered from pursuit, danger, or trouble.


Biblical definition 

It is shelter or protection from danger or distress, a place that provides shelter or protection.


Other synonyms of refuge may be:

Asylum, fortress, haven, hideaway, hiding place, protection.


Psalm 46:1

God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.


In order to be granted asylum or refuge in Canada, an individual is required to provide evidence demonstrating either that they have suffered persecution and/or that they have a “well-founded fear” of future persecution in their home country.

There is no government fee for making a refugee claim. Refugee claims can either be made while the person is in Canada usually at the port of entry, or online if they are outside Canada.


I am blown away, thrilled to know that God is my refuge because it means I personally, and you too, can have shelter, protection, a safe hiding place in times of trouble, distress and all sorts of difficulties.


Believers are told by God that in the unpleasantness of life to cope by going to the God of refuge

Coping refers to conscious strategies used to reduce unpleasantness

  • God says cope by coming to Me for refuge,

  • But the world says cope by handling it yourself or with other people who are trying to cope as well. BUT NO, to God my refuge


Trying to cope on your own, without going to our ‘refuge God’ reminds me of a round stress squeeze toy that you squeeze and suddenly all sorts of bumps and limbs and warts grow out of the round shape.

-coping on your own, like that stress squeeze ball, can result in all sorts of numerous negative outcomes, all sorts of bumps

Example: instead of going to God for refuge (relief, protection, rest …) with your overwhelming stress you may go to the refrigerator for refuge, it’s called stress eating or emotional eating.

-and there are many negative coping mechanisms we utilize when we try to cope on our own without the God of true refuge.

Here is a list of negative coping mechanisms from the world analyzing itself on this topic:

Emotional eating

Drugs, including sleeping pills and antidepressants (this is the world)

Impulsive spending

Eating too little

Chewing finger nails

Negative self talk, criticizing yourself

Becoming aggressive (like driving fast or even being abusive)

Avoiding anything negative



Isolation, avoiding others


Downward socializing -you pick friends worse off than you

Overreacting to small issues because of other deep issues


These are some of the negative things that can occur when we self-cope, when we seek self-refuge or refuge in the world


Jesus reiterated the OT’s God is my Refuge when He said:

Come unto me (Jesus, Son of God) all you who are weary and heavy laden (stressed, burdened, troubled …) and I will give you rest (I will be your refuge).


In trouble, God is my refuge

Psalm 59:16

But I will sing of Your power; yes, I will sing aloud of Your mercy in the morning: for You have been my defense and refuge in the day of my trouble.

In trouble, God is your refuge




In my broken heart, God is my refuge

Psalm 62:8

Trust in him at all times; people, pour out your heart before him: God (Elohim) is a refuge for us.

In your broken heart, God is your refuge


In my tears, God is my refuge

Psalm 142:5

I cried unto You (with my tears I cried out to you), O Lord: I said, You are my refuge and my portion in the land of the living.

In your tears, God is your refuge



Even in calamities, perils and disasters, God is my refuge

Psalm 57:1

… O God, have mercy on me: for my soul trusts in You: yes, in the shadow of Your wings will I make my refuge, until these calamities (Disasters and perils) be over.

In all of these God is your refuge


In affliction, God is my refuge

Jeremiah 16:19

O Lord, my strength, and my fortress, and my refuge in the day of affliction,

God is your refuge


Q -But how is God a refuge, how do I make God a refuge, what do I do to have God be a refuge for me in my troubles, peril, heart break, in my tears and fears??

Q – How do I make God my shelter, my protection, a safe hiding place, how can God be my refuge?


Q - Where are you?      (near God or afar off)

My refuge is IN God, no where else but IN God

Psalm 62:7

In God is my salvation and my glory: the rock of my strength, and my refuge, is in God.

-there is no refuge in God if you are afar off from God

-if you draw near to God our refuge, He will draw near to you, you will enter God’s refuge, you will enter that haven of rest


- when the waves of trouble roll   draw near to God & enter His refuge

- when sorrows rise up

- when hope faints

- when griefs arise                       draw near to God & enter His refuge

- when gloomy doubts assail

- when comforts fail                     draw near to God & enter His refuge


Q -How do I draw near to God? How do I enter God’s refuge?  PLTT

- PRAY, David used the expression “Seek His Face”, we too should PRAY

- PRAY, enter into His presence -breathe your sorrows there

- PRAY, God attends the mourner’s prayer, the ear of sovereign grace

                                                     Hears you, He is not deaf to your pain

-PRAY, God’s mercy seat is open still


-LISTEN, to God’s Word, He speaks to you, His word can bring sweet


-LISTEN, read and ponder His Word, experience all that God is and has

        Promised to you -God is your Refuge

        -God is there, in His Word, enter into His presence there

Psalm 31:20 His presence is a refuge, a shelter

In the shelter of your presence, …


- THINK -about good things, all the good things God has done

- THINK -thankful thoughts, discipline of thankfulness, always

- THINK -worship God in your thoughts (all these names of God are

        Potent reminders that God is for us, He cares, He loves you.

        -the bigger God gets in your worship the smaller your worries

-TRUST -trust God, trust God to hear you, to help you

-TRUST -enter that refuge by just trusting God in all circumstances


Psalm 91:2

I will say of the Lord, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust.

God is our Refuge (El o heem May haas la^ new)

trust God with all your heart

PRAY to God,  LISTEN to God,     THINK about God,         TRUST God

February 26, 2023