Psalm 27: 1-4 and 11-13 NLT
“The Lord is my light and my salvation – so why should I be afraid? The Lord is my fortress, protecting me from danger, so why should I tremble? When evil people come to devour me, when my enemies and foes attack me, they will stumble and fall. Though a mighty army surrounds me, my heart will not be afraid. Even if I am attacked, I will remain confident. The one thing I ask of the Lord – the one thing I seek most – is to live in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, delighting in the Lord’s perfections and meditating in his Temple.
Teach me how to live, O Lord. Lead me along the right path, for my enemies are waiting for me. Do not let me fall into their hands. For they accuse me of things I’ve never done; with every breath, they threaten me with violence. Yet I am confident I will see the Lord’s goodness while I am here in the land of the living. Wait patiently for the Lord. Be brave and courageous. Yes, wait patiently for the Lord.”
Surely, God protected and was merciful to David many, many times. In this Psalm, he mentions not only enemies and foes, who intended to do him wrong, but even his mother and father, who had deserted him! Through all of his trials, God was faithful and protected David. This passage reminds me of another favorite verse: “If God is for us, who can be against us?” (Romans 8:31) We should take confidence in God’s power and goodness, but sometimes we don’t.
David realizes that he has much for which to be grateful – as do we. After describing how God has been his salvation, David asks the Lord to always stay by his side with the beautiful words, “The one thing I seek most is to live in the house of the Lord all the days of my life.”
I am certain that we are not even aware of all the perils and difficulties facing us! And of those of which we are aware (national discord, inequality, threats of nuclear attack, unending wars, and more), we are very fearful, spend sleepless nights of worry, become depressed, or develop elaborate plans to avoid or overcome these dangers. We despair when all hope seems to be lost. We forget that the Lord is our light and our salvation – often failing to ask for His help and compassion. David reminds us, “Wait patiently for the Lord. Be brave and courageous.” As Pastor Scott tells us, “Do not be afraid. For the Lord works in mysterious ways.”
Dear Lord, forgive us when we become fearful and anxious. Help us to remember that you are always with us – guarding and guiding us each day of our lives. Amen.
Karen F. Siple