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Focus Verses: Psalm 57:4-7
I am in the midst of lions; I lie among ravenous beasts—men whose teeth
are spears and arrows, whose tongues are sharp swords. 5 Be exalted, O
God, above the heavens; let your glory be over all the earth. 6 They
spread a net for my feet—I was bowed down in distress. They dug a pit in
my path—but they have fallen into it themselves. 7 My heart is
steadfast, O God, my heart is steadfast; I will sing and make music.
See 1 Samuel 24 to read the story behind the Psalm.
Psalms in today's reading are filled with descriptions of perils
juxtaposed with expressions of praise. In one breath David described the
tongues of his enemies as sharp swords, but then in the next breath
David's tongue began to praise his God. He thought of his enemies and
described the trap they had spread for his feet, but his next thought
was the recognition that his enemies would be the ones to ultimately
trip and fall.
Many things were crumbling down around
him, but David's heart was steadfast. He was confident that by God's
grace he would not be brought down, and so he lifted up his voice in
songs of praise.
Response and Action:
I think of the fears and challenges in my life, I will lift them up to
God in prayer. And as I cry out for help, I will also sing songs of
honor and trust. I will punctuate my pleas for help with shouts of
praise. Every problem I recount to God will be accompanied with an
expression of hope and adoration. Every time I think of the things that
threaten to bring me down, I will give thanks to the Lord who has
promised to hold me up.
God, I live in a world of danger, but you are a God of deliverance.
There are things that scare me, but you have promised to save me. Traps
have been set to pull me down, but your truth has been given to hold me
up. In the face of every peril, I will give you praise. Thank you for
Christ Jesus who has both promised and proved that you are the faithful
God who has defeated every enemy—even death. Nothing can defeat those
who have placed their confidence in you by trusting in your Son, our
Savior, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit--one God now
and forever. Amen.
Spiritual Formation Verses: 2 Timothy 1:12b
12b I know whom I have believed, and am convinced that he is able to guard what I have entrusted to him for that day.
Faith and Doubt
by John Ortberg