When you have trouble, anxiety, fear, or grief what do you do first? Do you struggle to meet your needs? Do you look for ways to lighten your emotions or numb your pain? Or do you pray? Do you lighten your load by giving it to The Lord, your Loving Father, Savior, and Advocate? Do you know that God hears you, He listens, and He cares?
King David prayed. He was not afraid to unload all his deepest worries, fears, and feelings on God because he knew how much God loved and cared for him and he knew that whatever he said, God knew his heart better than he did. He cried out to God for vindication, for justice, and for protection. Verses 1-2 read,
“Hear a just cause, O Lord; attend to my cry!
Give ear to my prayer from lips free of deceit!
2 From your presence let my vindication come!
Let your eyes behold the right!”
From the time David first knew he would become king, he had enemies. They were not just out to hurt him or make him miserable, they were out to kill him. Once he was king it didn’t stop, his enemies were plentiful. But, David was a man after God’s own heart. The songs and poems David wrote to praise God exemplified his heart and prayers.
David was not perfect. His sins were many, but he had faith and friendship with God. And because of his faith The Lord saw the righteousness not the iniquity of his soul. And David took pleasure in God, His Word, and His path. David delighted in God and God delighted in him. God made David over, ever transforming him and maturing him to be conformed to His image. Verses 3-5 say,
“You have tried my heart, you have visited me by night,
you have tested me, and you will find nothing;
I have purposed that my mouth will not transgress.
4 With regard to the works of man, by the word of your lips
I have avoided the ways of the violent.
5 My steps have held fast to your paths;
my feet have not slipped.”
Because David had such a close relationship with God he really relished pleasing his Lord and he endeavored to be an example of God’s virtue. He wasn’t afraid to bring it to God’s attention. He knew just as much as God overlooked his flaws ad forgave his sins, that he noticed his endeavors and took pleasure in his good works.
David chose to follow God, not man. He chose God’s love over man’s selfishness. We know David sinned. David had many wives and concubines. He had an affair and murdered the woman’s husband to hide the affair and the pregnancy that resulted. But when God thought of David that isn’t what He thought of. He remembered his faith, his joy, his praise, and his camaraderie.
Believer, do you know that God loves you that much too? He doesn’t bring to mind the sins nor the mistakes you’ve made. He thinks of your faith, your love, your efforts, and Jesus’ righteousness which is now your righteousness. He adores you with an unwavering unfaltering love. He is transforming you to His image. David praised Him for His profound and constant care. Verses 6-7 read,
“I call upon you, for you will answer me, O God;
incline your ear to me; hear my words.
7 Wondrously show your steadfast love,
O Savior of those who seek refuge
from their adversaries at your right hand.
8 Keep me as the apple of your eye;
hide me in the shadow of your wings,
9 from the wicked who do me violence,
my deadly enemies who surround me.”
God listens, he pays attention to His beloved. And His beloved seek Him first above everything else because we know that He will ensure everything else falls into place. God is our Refuge, our Sanctuary, and our Rock. We are the apple of his eye. That means God cherishes you above everything else! The phrase literally translates as ‘little man of my eye’, the reflection you see of yourself in the others pupil. We are the reflection of God, made by Him in His image. He chooses to see His glory in us and not the sin. Because He values us so much, He protects us, we are hidden in Him, in His strength and power. Nothing can hurt us. They can’t even see the true us in order to hurt us because we are hidden in God’s protection. All they can hurt is our temporary shell, our soul is hidden in God.
It’s different for the lost. They blindly follow the enemy. They try to fill the hole in their souls with selfish ventures. They hate God and his children. They make Him and us out to be hateful because they are blinded by the enemy and fooled by his backward thinking. They serve Satan and self and in his service they want to destroy the work of God. Verses 10-14 say,
“They close their hearts to pity;
with their mouths they speak arrogantly.
11 They have now surrounded our steps;
they set their eyes to cast us to the ground.
12 He is like a lion eager to tear,
as a young lion lurking in ambush.
13 Arise, O Lord! Confront him, subdue him!
Deliver my soul from the wicked by your sword,
14 from men by your hand, O Lord,
from men of the world whose portion is in this life.
You fill their womb with treasure;
they are satisfied with children,
and they leave their abundance to their infants.”
The lost only have the temporary earth and this present life. They have no hope of eternity, no expectation of The Kingdom of Heaven, and no promise of salvation. So they live to gratify their cravings and take pleasure in now. They are not our enemy.
Satan is the enemy. The lost are his oblivious prisoners. Pray for them. Pray for their deliverance. Give them the same hope God gave us. Jesus is calling them and Satan seeks to keep them deaf to His voice.
But we are not deaf to God’s voice. We clearly hear His Spirit, and He hears us too. He listens and He pays attention. We need nothing more than God. He is our All in All. One day we will see Him face to face. We keep our hope. We know His promise. And we have complete confidence that it is already done. Verse 15 ends the Psalm.
“As for me, I shall behold your face in righteousness;
when I awake, I shall be satisfied with your likeness.”
When you suffer where do you turn? Do you turn to yourself or your Lord? He is I Am. We only need Him. Be satisfied with His glory. Can you imagine anything more splendid?