Tuesday, July 14, 2009

The ultimate protector

Today's scripture comes from:

Scripture: Psalm 59:9-11 (NIV) O my Strength, I watch for you;

You, O God, are my fortress, my loving God.

God will go before me

and will let me gloat over those who slander me.

But do not kill them, O Lord, our shield,

or my people will forget.

In your might make them wander about,

And bring them down.

In the classic movie “Caddyshack,” Carl the greens keeper tells a not-too-confident Ty Webb, that he can take care of Judge Smails before their big-money match by delicately cutting his hamstring with a knife, thereby ruining his golf game. Carl doesn’t want to kill Smails, he just wants to derail his golf game. OK, enough of the silly comparisons.

David seems to soften his tone a little with God in this Psalm, only wanting to make his enemies wander around a little before God takes care of them. Contrast that with the countless times in the Psalms when we see David practically begging God to annihilate his enemies. In this passage, David seems to be feeling a little more confident. “Don’t destroy them, Lord, just wound them a little.” Instead of death, David simply asks God to let him brag a little over his enemies.

David feels wickedness all around him, but his confidence comes from his faith in God, whom he calls his “Strength.” Because it’s capitalized, Strength is what David is calling God. David is praising God because of his continued help in trying times. David ends Psalm 59 (vs. 7) with: “O My Strength, I sing praises to you; / You, O God, are my fortress, my loving God.” O the beauty of David’s poetry. Fortress is a term meaning protection coming from God.

A fortress signifies that it is fortified or well protected, so David goes so far as to say all of Jerusalem is under his protection. God not only protects us, he protects our homes and our families. Being a single adult, with or without kids in the home, is not easy. It has its ups and downs, often caused by the anger of an ex spouse. It is comforting to know that we can take a deep breath and exhale slowly, knowing God is our ultimate protector.

How does this apply to my life?

Today’s prayer: Lord, thank you for your protection from my enemies. You are good. Amen

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