In the quiet, we see ourselves for who we are despite the public image that we work diligently to craft. We like to appear as though we have it all together, that we are staying close to the shepherd when in fact we are wanderers. Sometimes we will wander only a little way, keeping the Rock that is refuge in sight while playing around the edges of the territory. The road back will be clear and straight.
In you, O Lord, I have taken refuge; let me never be put to shame; deliver me in your righteousness.
Turn your ear to me, come quickly to my rescue; be my rock of refuge, a strong fortress to save me.
Since you are my rock and my fortress, for the sake of your name lead and guide me. (Psalm 31:1-3)
Can you still see the Rock?
Grace and peace to you.
Hear my cry, O God; listen to my prayer. (v1)
It seems appropriate that the first post of this new year returns our attention to the psalms. This brief entry in the psalter reminds us in the simplest fashion of the consistency and permanence of the God in which we have faith. He was not like the arbitrary and capricious gods of the peoples who surrounded Israel whose demands and favor changed from day to day depending on their mood. Yahweh is today as He was yesterday and will be tomorrow.
From the ends of the earth I call to you, I call as my heart grows faint;
lead me to the rock that is higher than I.
For you have been my refuge, a strong tower against the foe. (vv 2-3)
In three couplets (2-3,4-5,6-7) the psalmist professes his confidence in the strength and protection of the God he longs to make his abode with. He states his mortal weakness and contrasts it with the eternal strength of God. In his weak state, David asks only that he be allowed a small place at the edge of the shadow of God’s outstretched wings. For this privilege he will respond in eternal praise.
Then will I ever sing praise to your name and fulfill my vows day after day. (v8)