2/19/24 Lent Psalm 56
During Lent we are reading a psalm together and letting it direct our prayers. For a list of our selected psalms got to the blog for 2/16.
There’s an old joke about two friends hiking in the mountains. All of a sudden, a huge bear steps onto the trail and begins to walk toward them. One guy drops down, takes a pair of running shoes out of his backpack and starts to take his boots off and put the running shoes on. His buddy says, “Are you crazy? You can’t outrun that bear, even with running shoes.” The first guy looks carefully at his friend and says, “I don’t have to outrun the bear.”
Somedays it feels like that, doesn’t it? The enemy is bearing down on you, and you are just trying to outrun somebody. All the psalms we have read so far, except the first day, have been written during David’s run through the desert, trying to escape Saul. Every place David turns, another enemy pops up. One guy is telling Saul where he is. Another guy is uncovering his secret hiding place. And today, David is caught between Saul and the Philistines. This guy can’t catch a break.
If you circle the sun long enough you will have those seasons when it seems everyone is out to get you. People you have trusted seem to turn their backs on you. New enemies pop up around every corner. There is no place to hide.
David finds an interesting place to get help in Psalm 56. He says in verse 3, “When I am afraid, I put my trust in God.” That’s good advice but it’s not new. Of course, we trust God. We all know that. But how? What does that look like? Well in verse 4, and again in verse 10, he says, “In God, whose Word I praise…” In fact, in verse 10 he says it twice. When my enemies are closing in on me, I trust God. And I do that by getting into His Word.
I don’t know about you, but God doesn’t talk audibly to me a lot. But in the most difficult circumstances, He speaks to me continually from His Word.
“I will never leave you or forsake you.”
“The Lord is my refuge and my strength.”
“I can do all things through Christ.”
He is right there for me in His Word. All I have to do is go to it. And the more I go to it, the more I find Him there. So, when the bad guys or the bears are after you, trust the Word of God. Trust His presence. Trust His power. Trust His promises. And trust His response to your praise. And while you are praising, if you’re in the mountains, be lacing up your running shoes.