Thursday, October 15, 2015

In the Cover of Your Presence

David was in a precarious place. 

David heard that the Philistines were in the city of Keilah and were robbing the threshing floor. Feeling responsibility, he inquired of the Lord as to whether he should attack the Philistines. He heard a yes.

The problem was however that his men were afraid of the Philistines and didn’t like this plan. David, listening to his men, again inquired of the Lord and heard the same response. And so they went down to Keilah and experienced a great victory.

But the story continues. Enter Saul.

Saul heard that David had come to Keilah and Saul was ready for war. The victory is fading in the fear of what's next. 

Once again, David prays. God’s answers led to great shame. Saul was coming after him and his army and the people of Keilah—those he had just protected—were planning to hand David and all his men over to Saul.

So David came up with an escape plan. They left Keilah and went wherever they could go hiding in the wilderness.

In those few verses there is victory and there is shame which led to hiding. And there is God whose character is on display and whose purposes are carried out through David.

This incident recorded in I Samuel 23:1-14 may well be what was in David’s mind as he penned the words of Psalm 31.

The shame sprinkled throughout Psalm 31--

               Because of my adversaries I have become a reproach, especially to my neighbors, v.11

               O LORD, let me not be put to shame, for I call upon you; v.17

 is offset by the abundant protection of God. The words refuge, rescue, redeemed, delivered, trust, steadfast love also appear multiple times.
Although difficult to see, in the above picture, half-way up or half-way down this cliff is an Eagle's nest, big enough to fill the back of a pick-up truck. In The Message translation, Psalm 31:2 reads, "Your granite cave a hiding place, your high cliff aerie (nest) a place of safety."

As I look up at that nest, safety is not the first word that comes to mind. It seems downright scary to me. Then I remember my husband's wisdom, safety is not the absence of danger, but the presence of the Lord.

But I especially find encouragement in verse 20, “In the cover of your presence you hide them from the plots of men;”

David found safety in the cover of His presence. Can you fill in the blanks with a piece of your story? When did you experience the cover of His presence?

Next Thursday, I’m sharing a piece of my story. A modern day story that could end in shame except that God is a redeeming, loving, rescuing God who … if I will trust … will show His love even in these places in the cover of His presence.

So, come back next Thursday for the rest of the story—or at least an illustration of how I have experienced the reality of Psalm 31. 

                      "Blessed GOD! His love is the wonder of the world. Trapped by a siege, I panicked. "Out of sight, out of mind," I said. But you heard me say it, you heard and listened."                     Psalm 31:21 and 22, The Message                                                                                                                                    

No comments:

Post a Comment