Empty: Psalm 86 - Persevere, Power

Psalm 86

One of my favorite stories from the Bible showcasing God’s incredible power is the story of David facing Goliath in the region of the valley of Elah. The Philistines and Israel are in a bit of a stalemate as each army stands on opposing hills above the valley. An army descending first becomes vulnerable. A gigantic, well armored, and arrogant Philistine named Goliath descends into the valley. He invites Israel to send a single challenger, all the while blaspheming Israel’s God. Enter David, who catches Goliath making the error of his life – not in challenging Israel, but in blaspheming David’s Master. David’s passion for the Lord compels him, a mere shepherd, to charge Goliath using a simple sling, a stone and his absolute confidence in the power of God.

Many of us want the “David and Goliath” miracle. If God doesn’t deliver us from our trials quickly, we start to feel like He is ignoring us. The reality is God is not ignoring us in trials, He’s empowering us. Oftentimes the circumstances we want to change are the very circumstances God is busy using to prepare us for victory. David had to go through a season as a “forgotten” shepherd to be prepared for royalty. He had learned to fiercely defend his flock from lions and bears. And we see that God wanted to develop in him these characteristics of a good shepherd, because one day he would be the shepherd over the Lord’s flock as the King of Israel.

In facing the lion and the bear, and even the giants in our lives, we may find ourselves doubting whether God is listening to us. In these seasons, let’s focus on changing our perspective. Adversity is often a blessing in disguise. One’s destiny isn’t revealed during the times in life where everything is going smoothly. It’s usually revealed in the valleys of life. But even in those valleys, we can rest easy because our God is the God of both hill and valley. He is an unlimited God with unlimited power. We must have faith in a never-failing God in order to remain patient as we persevere. He will always come through in and for you with His almighty power.

Turn to me and be gracious to me;     give your strength to your servant,     and save the son of your maidservant. Show me a sign of your favor,     that those who hate me may see and be put to shame     because you, Lord, have helped me and comforted me. Psalm 86:16-17 (ESV)