David in the Wilderness: Psalm 63 (part 8)

“For you are my help

and in the shadow of your wings I will exult!”

(Psalm 63:8 {Psalm 63:7 in English Bibles})

 

The language of God being as a mother eagle to his people, Israel, is a common Old Testament image (Exodus 19:4; Deuteronomy 32:11; Ruth 2:12; Psalm 17:8; etc…).  And oh, what a wonderful image it is—that of God providing his strong protection over his people, sheltering them from the storms by his great and mighty wings.  And it is from under the protection of God’s wings that we may not only rest in confident assurance of that protection, but we may sing to God undistracted by the cares of this world.  What assurance there is when you know that you are safe and protected!  What peace comes to a child’s heart when, after they have been threatened, they rest once again, safely in their parent’s arms!

Sadly, we live in a culture where many do not understand this concept.  Many children grow up in families where both spouses work and are out of the homes and have to learn to protect themselves from life’s difficulties.  Many children grow up without their fathers and don’t know the peace that comes from the assurance of the safety of being in their father’s arms.  Many adults put their own interests and goals ahead of the good of their families, again creating an environment where children are forced to find protection elsewhere.  Abuse, too, runs rampant in our culture, making the home anything but a safe place to be.  As a result, these young men and women have grown up relying on themselves, not trusting too many people, and not knowing the assurance of resting in the arms of one who loves them and is able to keep them safe from the  cares of the world.

Oh, the damage we have done to our families by pursuing our own agendas instead of the agenda of God—instead of pursuing his glory and righteousness.  Oh, beloved, what a message of hope we have to offer, though, in the Gospel!  In Christ, there is hope and peace and rest for the weary soul.  In Christ there is safety; under God’s strong wings we may find rest and help.  And under God’s strong wings we may finally sing for joy—exult—in the glory of Him who is greater than all the threats of this world put together.  In Christ and in Him alone we may find our help.

Our God, Our help in ages past,

Our hope for years to come.

Our shelter from the stormy blast,

And our eternal home:

Under the shadow of your throne

Your saints have dwelt secure;

Sufficient is your arm alone,

And our defense is sure.

-Isaac Watts

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