You’re not in this alone

by Peggy Pedersen

Psalm 31: 1-5
1 In you, O LORD, have I taken refuge;
let me never be put to shame;
deliver me in your righteousness.
2 Incline your ear to me;
make haste to deliver me.
3 Be my strong rock, a castle to keep me safe,
for you are my crag and my stronghold;
for the sake of your Name, lead me and guide me.
4 Take me out of the net that they have secretly set for me,
for you are my tower of strength.
5 Into your hands I commend my spirit,
for you have redeemed me,
O LORD, O God of truth.

How wonderful is the imagery in this Psalm: refuge, strong rock, castle, crag, stronghold, tower of strength. These words convey the power of God’s love for us. There is no protection or shelter like His—an impenetrable and invincible fortress. As Martin Luther wrote: He is “a bulwark never failing”–as one translation puts it. Abiding in Him, nothing can harm us. Nothing can separate us from Him.

Recently there were a couple of days when I really needed a word of encouragement. I was dealing with some issues and sent e-mails to a couple of close friends hoping for some advice. I waited to hear from them. They did not respond, probably due to busy schedules. I felt distressed. Help had not come. But then I read the psalmist’s words. Our loving God has promised that when we call upon Him, He always hears us. He is always listening—even to our unspoken prayers. He always has time for us. He always cares about our troubles, and He will always help us. In His Holy Word, He always has direction, comfort, encouragement and forgiveness for us. “I will lift up my eyes to the hills. From where does my help come? My help comes from the LORD who made heaven and earth.” (Psalm 121:1,2)

When we feel overwhelmed from inside by our own fears, doubts, temptations, and sins, when we feel overwhelmed from outside by the plain difficulties of life and from our eternal enemy who sets traps to lure us away from trusting in God, when we feel hemmed in from all sides, we should run for cover! We can turn to Jesus and He will guide us like a light in the darkness. He will untangle us from the mess we are in. He will comfort us in our distress. He will be strong for us where we are weak. We are not left unprotected but surrounded by the high walls of His love, the shelter of His wings, the sureness of His grace. He has promised “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” (Heb. 13:5)

Peggy Pedersen is a member of Redeemer Lutheran Church in Victoria, B.C.

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Posted By: Matthew Block
Posted On: October 4, 2010
Posted In: Grace-full Living,

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