Choosing To Believe
Exalted Lord, gracious Lord, loving Lord; I belong to You, and I want to learn from Your Word now.
Read PSALM 3:1-8
 A psalm of David. When he fled from his son Absalom.
Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. All rights reserved throughout the world. Used by permission of International Bible Society.
“Every morning when we awake, the choice stands before us: fear or faith? It is in prayer that we conquer, when fear is met by faith” (Don Williams).
In eight short verses, the psalmist moves from feeling overwhelmed by growing opposition and threat, to a place of quiet confidence in God and being able to look beyond his troubles to pray for others. The backdrop is David’s disappointment and pain as he fled for his life from his son, Absalom (2 Sam. 15-19). It is this which makes the journey of his feelings all the more remarkable. To make matters worse, his troubles, while deeply personal, were also being acted out very publicly on a national stage. There is a rising tide of disloyalty from across Israel; David, as the anointed of the Lord, has to run for his life; and there is the ever-growing impression that God had withdrawn from him (2 Sam. 15:26). These factors were all publicly humiliating in the extreme.
Things were really bad, and one of the hardest things to do is to affirm the truth that God is for us when we are in the midst of circumstances that scream the opposite. It is exactly at such times, however, that we need to summon up what we know about God’s grace and love for us, and remind ourselves of what he is truly like. Notice, though, that David also called out to the Lord (4), expressing his feelings, so this wasn’t about him being unreal.
Stuck in a seemingly hopeless situation, David nonetheless exercised the choice to believe that God had heard him and would respond. He chose to see his circumstances through the lens of what God is really like. The use of “I” in vs. 5 and 6 is emphatic, expressing intentional, purposeful choices. Consequently, against all odds, he was able to sleep peacefully, and wake in the knowledge that God would sustain him.
Meditate on v. 3, asking God to imbed its truth deeply within you, so it becomes your perspective in tough times. Bring any such times to God now.
Shepherd God, I need Your protection, guidance, and nurture. Watch over me with Your loving care as I go through each day.
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