1 O God, you have rejected us, broken our defenses;
you have been angry; oh, restore us.
2 You have made the land to quake; you have torn it open;
repair its breaches, for it totters.
3 You have made your people see hard things;
you have given us wine to drink that made us stagger.
4 You have set up a banner for those who fear you,
that they may flee to it from the bow. Selah
5 That your beloved ones may be delivered,
give salvation by your right hand and answer us!
11 Oh, grant us help against the foe,
for vain is the salvation of man!
12 With God we shall do valiantly;
it is he who will tread down our foes.
Another hard Psalm written out of a really hard place and so, feeling abandoned, even rejected by God (certainly confused, frustrated, and even disappointed by him)
I can’t read this without immediately thinking of a Haitian friend of mine who has experienced an inordinate amount of loss and trauma in his young life. “You have made your people see hard things; you’ve given us wine to drink that has made us stagger.“
That was where he was sitting uncomfortably already and then yesterday his dad dies unexpectedly. Staggering!
He feels so confused and disappointed by you.
But in fact, in reality, you have not left – you won’t, ever.
You’ve raised the flag high to show us where you are, where your fortified city is, the new Jerusalem, the city of God, glory, heaven! (Revelations 22)
The furled flag reminds us of your presence with us and of your current and future victory in Kingship.
And you’ve spoken to remind and assure us (through all of scripture and to our hearts personally) that when the foundations tremble and we ask, “Where is God?“ The answer is, “I am on the throne, very much in charge and in control.“
But even as David (and us) feel abandoned by God, he (we) cry to this same God – because we know, from our soul, that He is the only one who can lead us to this place of victory and shalom. Man’s help and efforts, my efforts or help-less.
But there’s no tidy, feel-good ending to this song. It ends with a prayer, a cry for help, and a faintly hopeful statement of faith.
And then, we wait…
Leave a Comment