Refuge from a crazy world | MOSS Part 3

Read what MOSS is about here. Dalene Reyburn, beautiful writer of today’s MOSS (found out what that is here) post, is the kind of person that leaves you feeling refreshed just by walking by. This woman of God is graced, not only with a gift of writing (which you can check out here or here), but in the very way she is. Definitely worth getting to know, she is – start by following her on Twitter. Enjoy!


Three thousand years ago, it was cool to compare the girl of your dreams to pomegranates and flocks of goats and stuff like that. The little book sandwiched sexily between Ecclesiastes and Isaiah is kind of freaky, in an ancient-Near-East-erotica kind of way.

Still, I love reading Solomon’s Song of Songs. I think the poetry is all at once poignant and down-to-earth and transcendent and gloriously romantic. But it’s not just the poetry. There’s a beautiful theme that recurs. I chatted to my husband, Murray, about writing this post. We agreed that all the marriage advice we have to offer is probably underpinned by this one theme.


Just listen to the girl: ‘Take me with you; come, let’s run! The king has brought me into his bedroom… My lover is mine, and I am his.’ (Song of Songs 1:4, 2:16) The guy says, ‘You are my private garden, my treasure, my bride, a secluded spring, a hidden fountain.’ (Song of Songs 4:12) Their passionate sense of belonging exclusively to each other creates a sensual sanctuary. They’re together. Hidden. Safe.

The world is monumentally messed up. It’s a crazy, broken place. There are hazardous people who hurt and hate. Landmines lurk. Even the sincerest intentions don’t necessarily shield you from being blown up on the road. It’s war out there. And I’m not a pessimist. In fact my glass isn’t half full; it’s freakin’ overflowing. But I’m being realistic. You shouldn’t expect the world to be anything other than sad and stukkend. That way, when you notice how by God’s glory it is still shot through with devastating beauty, that beauty is all the more breath taking. The point is, if lovers are to survive in the war zone, they need a refuge.

When I started dating Murray, I knew he was different because when I was with him I felt wholly, inexplicably safe. It was like coming home from a long, rough, dirty journey – and then having a hot shower and walking barefoot on soft clean carpet and having tea in your own kitchen. That feeling, you know: Ah. At last. I’m home. I belong. I’m away from the dangers of the elements and the unknown. Safe.

I also knew he was different because the refuge I had found wasn’t boring. It freed me. I felt it was a safety that allowed me to become what I was born for. A world of adventure was unlocked. It was thrilling. We had Our Song, as you do (because cheesiness is part of falling in love). It was Bruce Springsteen’s Born to Run. Murray would get a look in his eyes when it was playing and I was a goner. Intoxicated.

‘…let me in, I wanna be your friend,
I wanna guard your dreams and visions…
…I gotta find out how it feels;
I want to know if love is wild, girl, I want to know if love is real

…I’ll love you with all the madness in my soul
Someday, girl, I don’t know when, we’re gonna get to that place
Where we really want to go and we’ll walk in the sun
…baby we were born to run…’

Marriage is a picture of how Christ loves the church (Ephesians 5). We were born to run into the arms of Jesus, to find refuge in his forgiveness and to be set free to live his dreams for us. Maybe you’re intrigued by this series of posts because you are keen on an awesome marriage (now or later). Maybe a place to start would be to ask: Am I the kind of refuge that a world-weary, true-love-longing traveller would be passionately relieved to discover?

For me and Murray, the refuge of a Jesus-centred marriage means a forever commitment. It means no secrets, no deceit, no competition. It means trust and forgiveness and understanding and win-win. It means being fed and clothed, rested and restored – physically, emotionally, intellectually, spiritually. It’s a haven for gathering body and soul together, and for regaining passion and perspective. It’s shelter from storms and assailants. It’s private peace when the world is falling apart. It’s unedited, unadulterated fun.

We’ve welcomed the gift of others into our refuge. Two super cool little chaps, for example. They live with us. And it’s our deep desire that others who need temporary respite from the craziness out there would know that our home is a place of peace where Christ is King.

But for the grace of God go we.


Go to previous post: By the way, Christians are pretty messed up too | MOSS Part 2

Go to next post: Marriage: it’s simple | MOSS Part 4

Go to intro post: Marriage and Other Scary Stuff | MOSS Intro

15 thoughts on “Refuge from a crazy world | MOSS Part 3

Add yours

  1. I get to work with Dalene. How cool is that? Great post. Thanks Dee & Shae for getting this series off the ground.

  2. Thanks Dalene, marriage as refuge, that’s so true! A tangible, attainable (by God’s grace) goal post to aim for. Beautifully written as always!

  3. wow stunning post, really powerful word and definitely something i need to work a lot more at in my marriage cos as much as i love my wife completely with what i try to make a self-sacrificing love i know there are many times when i get it horribly wrong and am not safe for her or don’t make her feel safe – how we figure out conflict and difference of opinion within there is a tough one which we will figure out for a while still i imagine but this was such a refreshing read and just the way you framed it as refuge is definitely a lot ofr me to think about an d hopefully apply… thank you both!

  4. Thanks Dee! What a blessing to read the words of a wordsmith like you. I really appreciate your beautifully written posts – here and elsewhere. You paint the most amazing pictures with words. A gift and a talent.

  5. As always… A pleasure reading your post Dee! Knowing a little of what you and Murray have had to endure, I am inspired by your optimism and positive outlook and particularly your view on a “stukkend” world and God’s glory within it! How much more beautiful is His creation when His beauty out shadows the brokenness and sadness around us. I totally agree on the “refuge”, God said, “It is not good for man to be alone”, as much as I enjoyed being a single man, there is nothing compared to the security, comfort and stability of coming home to my lovely wife every day!

  6. I thought this one was good (Sorry Shae I am so far behind in reading this series. I am not a fully committed blogger yet… haha)… But sitting with a cup of coffee this series does intrigue me. What my fear is I guess: “is being single for so many years” how does one become “safe” again? I think this may relate to confidence in who I am. so the thought of another placing confidence is me is just darn scary?

    1. Hi – here’s a thought… What if you determined to make Jesus your refuge? No trust issues there. He’s definitely safe. And as you hide in Him, pray that he would restore and strengthen you to meet the needs of, and be the safe place for, that person He already knows – the one He is keeping for you. Just a thought 🙂 Praying for you; thanks for commenting.

      1. thanks for replying to my comment. that is a good idea. 🙂 thankfully christianity is so practical 🙂 we can put this stuff into action. yay!

  7. Thanks so much for this post. It was lovely and encouraging. I have only been married for almost 10 months, but the place of safety we are for each other now is incredible. I think it’s important for those out there who are struggling to be that to each other to know that everyone doesn’t necessarily start out on that foundation. It would be ideal to start out being a safe haven for each other, but my husband and I started our relationship in the midst of our worst mistakes and greatest pain. I trusted him with my whole heart, but that doesn’t mean that he didn’t hurt me and I didn’t hurt him. The key is like you said Shae to make Jesus your refuge. If you turn to to Him in despair when you can’t seem to stop hurting the people you love, He is loving and generous to heal and restore you and to make something beautiful out of your mess. I wake up sometimes in the middle of the night and I cannot believe how lucky I am to be in the incredible marriage I am today, but it was simple really. We reached out to God and he taught us how to love 🙂 I should say he is teaching us how to love, because it is a journey. If you’re out there and you are struggling, just know that you will grow and you will learn if you just keep seeking God and putting one foot in front of the other.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Website Built with

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: