High River United Church of High River, Alberta

What Does It Mean When We Say God Protects?



Live without fear: your Creator has made you holy, has always protected you, and loves you as a mother. Go in peace to follow the good road and may God’s blessing be with you always. Amen. St. Clare of Assisi


Clare of Assisi (1194- 1253) was one of the first followers of Francis of Assisi, and founded the Order of Poor Ladies (later known as the Order of St. Clare or the Poor Clares). The group devoted themselves to manual labour and prayer within a cloister. They went barefoot, slept on the ground, ate no meat and kept almost complete silence.


I’ve pondered what Clare meant when she declared, “God has always protected you.” I don’t imagine that she thought God would protect people from illness, physical harm, loss of property or possessions or even loss of life. She lived in a time when all of this was daily reality, even more so than today. So what might she have meant when she claimed God’s protection?


I believe that Clare meant that her soul was protected by God’s love, that she could trust that God would keep her heart soft and at peace, so that she could offer love and compassion to others without judgement. In her willingness to embrace a life of strict poverty and prayer, Clare understood that there was something so much more important than the trappings of this life. It was her connection to God that was the most important thing, the one thing that needed to be protected. The second most important thing was that her soft and caring heart be protected so that she could care for others. Everything else was extra and maybe not even needed.


This may be hard for us to imagine and hard to embrace. We probably find ourselves wishing for God’s protection of much more than our caring spirits and our relationships with God and with each other.   We will absolutely feel devastation and grief in the face of any kind of loss of home and health. Yet, we can also learn from Clare about what is the most important of all in life.


Blessings to each of you as you re-connect with those most important in your lives

after this time of forced separation.


Rev. Susan & Rev. David

High River United Church


a community of help, home & hope


Heart of God 2



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