1 I will bless the Lord at all times;
his praise will always be in my mouth.
2 I praise the Lord—
let the suffering listen and rejoice.
3 Magnify the Lord with me!
Together let us lift his name up high!
4 I sought the Lord and he answered me.
He delivered me from all my fears.
5 Those who look to God will shine;
their faces are never ashamed.
6 This suffering person cried out:
the Lord listened and saved him from every trouble.
7 On every side, the Lord’s messenger protects those who honor God; and he delivers them.
8 Taste and see how good the Lord is!
The one who takes refuge in him is truly happy!
Have you ever been in real trouble and it looked like there was no possible way out? Sometimes we find ourselves in trouble and the more we try to get ourselves out, the deeper we find ourselves trapped in a mess of our own making.
David, the writer of this psalm, was in trouble. He was on the run from King Saul, who wanted to kill him. David took refuge in the tabernacle, then he lied to the priest about why he was there unarmed and unguarded. David asked for a sword and some bread, but the priest only had Goliath’s sword and the Holy Presence bread to give him. David goes to the Philistine city of Gath where he is captured, while carrying Goliath’s sword, and he has to feign insanity so the king will let him go. (You can read the story in 1 Samuel 21 & 22.)
David had stopped relying on God. He was panicked and acted foolishly while fleeing Saul. He relied on his own poor judgement that only got him deeper into trouble. In his fear he forgot that he had a very special relationship with God. He forgot that God had been at work guiding him and protecting him.
Like David we too sometimes forget our special relationship with God. We rely on ourselves when we are overcome by fear. We end up making a mess of our lives. But God is always there with us, loving us and protecting us, in all our troubles. God is waiting for us to seek him so he can deliver us from all our fears and provide us the only refuge that brings happiness.
By Jeneene Reduker
For Pondering & Prayer
David’s psalm expresses such deep felt joy as he praises God for his deliverance. David experiences such joy in the goodness of God that he can literally taste it! Praising God brings us happiness.Sometimes we don’t feel like we can praise God, but we can always find something to be thankful for in our day, no matter how small.
Read this psalm again looking for what word or phrase speaks to you and your situation in your life right now. Are you able to bless and praise God, or are you suffering or in fear? Wherever you are, take the phrase from this psalm that speaks to you, and carry it with you through your day. Let it bless you, bring you refuge and move your heart to praise God.