Morning Reflection 3/26/12 – Psalm 31

Psalm 31

For the choir director: A psalm of David.

1 O LORD, I have come to you for protection;
don’t let me be disgraced.
Save me, for you do what is right.
2 Turn your ear to listen to me;
rescue me quickly.
Be my rock of protection,
a fortress where I will be safe.
3 You are my rock and my fortress.
For the honor of your name, lead me out of this danger.
4 Pull me from the trap my enemies set for me,
for I find protection in you alone.
5 I entrust my spirit into your hand.
Rescue me, LORD, for you are a faithful God.

6 I hate those who worship worthless idols.
I trust in the LORD.
7 I will be glad and rejoice in your unfailing love,
for you have seen my troubles,
and you care about the anguish of my soul.
8 You have not handed me over to my enemies
but have set me in a safe place.

9 Have mercy on me, LORD, for I am in distress.
Tears blur my eyes.
My body and soul are withering away.
10 I am dying from grief;
my years are shortened by sadness.
Sin has drained my strength;
I am wasting away from within.
11 I am scorned by all my enemies
and despised by my neighbors—
even my friends are afraid to come near me.
When they see me on the street,
they run the other way.
12 I am ignored as if I were dead,
as if I were a broken pot.
13 I have heard the many rumors about me,
and I am surrounded by terror.
My enemies conspire against me,
plotting to take my life.

14 But I am trusting you, O LORD,
saying, “You are my God!”
15 My future is in your hands.
Rescue me from those who hunt me down relentlessly.
16 Let your favor shine on your servant.
In your unfailing love, rescue me.
17 Don’t let me be disgraced, O LORD,
for I call out to you for help.
Let the wicked be disgraced;
let them lie silent in the grave.[a]
18 Silence their lying lips—
those proud and arrogant lips that accuse the godly.

19 How great is the goodness
you have stored up for those who fear you.
You lavish it on those who come to you for protection,
blessing them before the watching world.
20 You hide them in the shelter of your presence,
safe from those who conspire against them.
You shelter them in your presence,
far from accusing tongues.

21 Praise the LORD,
for he has shown me the wonders of his unfailing love.
He kept me safe when my city was under attack.
22 In panic I cried out,
“I am cut off from the LORD!”
But you heard my cry for mercy
and answered my call for help.

23 Love the LORD, all you godly ones!
For the LORD protects those who are loyal to him,
but he harshly punishes the arrogant.
24 So be strong and courageous,
all you who put your hope in the LORD!

via Psalm 31 NLT – Psalm 31 – For the choir director: A – Bible Gateway.

Wouldn’t it be nice if life worked out the way it does in the movies. In movies everything works out alright in the end. It is what we refer to as “a satisfying ending.” The bad guy “gets his.” The good guy ends up being the hero and loved by everyone. The underdogs end up winning. I heard that in the movie: Dodge Ball: A True Underdog Story” had the underdogs losing at the end of the game. The production company didn’t like the ending (probably because the public didn’t either), so they had to go back and re-shot the ending (which explains some things). Why did the underdogs lose in the ending, because that is how life is. Why did the production company want the ending changed? Because we don’t like movies like that.

When I read this psalm from David, it reflects life, not some movie, TV show, or Reality TV, but real, heart-breaking, life. Spend some time with verses 9 – 13. David actually says that his life is shortened because of grief. If you have ever had a hard time identifying with the “happy, happy, joy, joy” version of Christianity, this psalm is for you! The psalms do not overlook the darker and more difficult side of life. The psalms embrace that side of life. Instead of pretending that difficulties never arise when you are following God, the psalms show that sometimes, even those “after God’s own heart” cry out in anguish. Life doesn’t always work out with the underdog winning, the hero being beloved, or the bad guy getting what he deserves. The psalmists know this.

Yet, even in the midst of the darkness David prays:

14 But I am trusting you, O LORD,
saying, “You are my God!”
15 My future is in your hands.
Rescue me from those who hunt me down relentlessly.
16 Let your favor shine on your servant.
In your unfailing love, rescue me

This is such a beautiful prayer from one who is wasting away from sorrow. Such trust. Such faith.

My hope is that even when life turns dark and things go from bad to worse, I will still trust my future and my pain to God. He is able. He is love. He will see you through!

Leave a Reply