GLEANINGS FROM THE SCRIPTURES
IN THE SHADOW OF HIS WINGS
By Keith L. Estes
O God, thou art my God; early will I seek thee: my soul thirsteth for thee, my flesh longeth for thee in a dry and thirsty land, where no water is; To see thy power and thy glory, so as I have seen thee in the sanctuary. Because thy loving-kindness is better than life, my lips shall praise thee. Thus will I bless thee while I live: I will lift up my hands in thy name. My soul shall be satisfied as with marrow and fatness; and my mouth shall praise thee with joyful lips: When I remember thee upon my bed, and meditate on thee in the night watches. Because thou hast been my help, therefore in the shadow of thy wings will I rejoice. My soul followeth hard after thee: thy right hand upholdeth me. But those that seek my soul, to destroy it, shall go into the lower parts of the earth. They shall fall by the sword: they shall be a portion for foxes. But the king shall rejoice in God; every one that sweareth by him shall glory: but the mouth of them that speak lies shall be stopped. (Psalm 63)
The location of the writing of the psalm is described generally as In the wilderness of Judah. Unlike many of the psalms written in these dire situations, however, this psalm is overflowing with thanksgiving rather than lament and petition. David declares his longing for spiritual renewal (vv 1,2), he expresses his thankful mood (vv 3-6) he gives voice to his trust in God (vv 7-8) and he announces his hope for the future (vv 9-11) Enemies are mentioned only in passing (vv 9, 10).
In his message UNDER THE SHADOW Charles Spurgeon writes:
“Live by the day- aye, by the hour. Put not trust in frames and feelings. Care more for a grain of faith than a ton of excitement. Trust in God alone, and lean not on the reeds of human help. Be not surprised when friends fail you: it is a failing world. Never count upon immutability in a man: inconstancy you may reckon upon without fear of disappointment. The disciples of Jesus forsook him; be not amazed if your adherents wander away to other teachers: as they were not your all when with you, all is not gone from you with their departure.
Serve God with all your might while the candle is burning. And then when it goes out for a season, you will have the less to regret. Be content to be nothing, for that is what you are. When your own emptiness is painfully forced upon your consciousness, chide yourself that you ever dreamed of being full, except in the Lord. Set small store by present rewards; be grateful for earnests by the way, but look for the recompensing joy hereafter. Continue with double earnestness to serve your Lord when no visible result is before you. Any simpleton can follow the narrow path in the light: faith’s rare wisdom enables us to march on in the dark with infallible accuracy, since she places her hand in that of her great Guide. Between this and heaven there may be rougher weather yet, but it is all provided for by our covenant Head.
In nothing let us be turned aside from the path, which the divine call has urged us to pursue. Come fair or come foul, the pulpit is our watchtower, and the ministry our warfare; be it ours, when we cannot see the face of God, to trust under the shadow of his wings.”
Oswald Chambers writes, “Our spiritual strength begins to be drained when we stop lifting our eyes to Him. Our stamina is sapped, not so much through external troubles surrounding us but through problems in our thinking. We have to realize that no effort can be too high.”
David has recognized God’s help and feels comfortable in the shadow of His wings.
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