Holy Saturday

by Maurice Seaton

“In you, O Lord, I seek refuge,” the psalmist cries. Shelter, protection, sanctuary, and a haven of safety and security encompass the definition of the word “refuge.”

I am struck that by adding one letter, we arrive at “refugee.” Is not the psalmist’s plea also our plea, one we share with every refugee? Refugee or non-refugee, we are made in God’s image, and we all flee to our Creator with our troubles and needs, in search of refuge.

The psalmist continues: “Incline your ear to me; rescue me speedily. Be a rock of refuge for me, a strong fortress to save me.” The United Nations High Commission for Refugees estimates that today there are 25.4 million refugees, 40 million internally displaced persons, and 3.1 million asylum seekers. When we pray we can consciously ask God’s blessing and protection on every child of God forced to flee their home and become a refugee.

Many times have I sought and given thanks for the safety and comfort of God’s loving presence. My prayer is an adaptation of verse 16:

Let your face, O God, shine upon every refugee, and save us all in your steadfast love. Amen.