It Starts With The Relationship
1 Blessed be the Lord, my rock,
who trains my hands for war,
and my fingers for battle;
2 he is my steadfast love and my fortress,
my stronghold and my deliverer,
my shield and he in whom I take refuge,
who subdues peoples under me.
Psalm 144 starts out with a dedication to the relationship David has with the Lord. His first words are a blessing to the Lord. David understands the Lord is the solid foundation on which his hope rests. During David’s time he saw much war. War is a terrible and awful thing. With constant danger David had many opportunity to meet death, but the Lord was always with David even when David went his own way. I believe that while we can’t always “feel” the Lord’s presence, He remains with us. Like a dear friend, we can trust Him and we always know we’re loved even when we go astray. When our love is sincere, we come back when we’re called and deal with our mistakes and the consequences, but always because of that love. For this hope, this faith, this love, we receive a mighty foundation in the rock of our salvation. He saves us from eternal death and shields us from the arrows of Satan. David also understood any power he had was the gift of God and not by his own hand, thus giving God credit for victories other men might have claimed credit for.
Pondering the Relationship
3 O Lord, what is man that you regard him,
or the son of man that you think of him?
4 Man is like a breath;
his days are like a passing shadow.
David’s question is one all ask at one point or another. When we feel isolated and insignificant, sometimes when we are experiencing the grandeur of creation, or when we are facing the oppression of life we wonder how an all powerful all mighty omnipotent and omniscient God can have a personal interest in something so puny as a sinful sorry sack of flesh like ourselves. Even David, who was so dearly loved by God, bowed in humility and awesome wonder at the greatness of such a thing.
A Small Request
9 I will sing a new song to you, O God;
upon a ten-stringed harp I will play to you,
12 May our sons in their youth
be like plants full grown,
our daughters like corner pillars
cut for the structure of a palace;
13 may our granaries be full,
providing all kinds of produce;
may our sheep bring forth thousands
and ten thousands in our fields;
14 may our cattle be heavy with young,
suffering no mishap or failure in bearing;
may there be no cry of distress in our streets!
David is so excited about what God does for him and even more, for what God plans still to do, that he breaks out in song. In his excitement he asks the Lord for the desires of his heart. Notice, if you will, that David’s desires are for his people and not for himself. Notice he reminds the Lord of His own love and asks Him to share the love with others. He seeks to see a world where the children grow strong and don’t suffer. He seeks to see a world without hunger or pain. He seeks the very world we all hope for. He cries out for it, he sings for it, he prays for it. This is the hope of David, and it is our hope also. It is the hope Jesus spoke of. It is the kind of love that He preached to his disciples about. It is the world where He reigns in the company of His creation where there are no tears, no danger, no more death. Death is defeated and now it is merely a matter of time until the prize is claimed. The prophets and the apostles understood this hope. Isaiah wrote about this hope in Is 11 and 65. John wrote extensively about it in the last chapter of Revelation. Ezekiel wrote about it. So did many other bible writers over the whole span of more than 15 centuries of writing. We have more than a wish for such a world, we have it as a promise. This doesn’t mean we should pray for it, we definitely should pray for His will to be done, to seek to partake, and most of all to share God’s love by helping others partake.
The Good News of Ps 144
15 Blessed are the people to whom such blessings fall!
Blessed are the people whose God is the Lord!
These blessing are available to you. It’s the hope we call salvation. It’s the life we are born into when we are born again. It is our inheritance when we become grafted into the branch of Jessie and are adopted in the family of Abraham. It is not a small thing to come to grips with the reality of such an all powerful God or the concept of such a being loving us so deeply and so personally. It is no small thing to lay one’s own will aside and submit to such authority when it is invisible to so much of the world. To be born again is to become anew, and to live as a new being. It means change. It isn’t easy and it isn’t accepted by the world, but it is available if you submit to Christ. We have the promise of eternal life. Will you hear this good news and take it to heart?