What a great hymn! Some quip that its stirring words and powerful music might be the theme song for Lutherans.
I must admit that it does move me. Though some of the language seems better suited to medieval times, yet its clear sentiment rings true: life can be uncertain and overwhelming.
We can turn to God for refuge and for ultimate protection. God created all that was and is just by saying the words. If the words of God are so powerful and effective at creating life, so the word of God is just as powerful when facing the troubles and trials of this life.
Just "one little word subdues" all the powers that flail against this life, Martin Luther wrote in the third verse. That "one little word," of course, is Jesus. Through Jesus on the cross, God says "yes" to life. Here, in Jesus the Word, is refuge and balm, strength and courage.
Lord God, Heavenly Father, thank you for being our mighty fortress against all that terrifies us. Help me to cling to your word of promise. Amen.