Each evening they come back,
howling like dogs
and prowling about the city.
They wander about for food
and growl if they do not get their fill.
But I will sing of your strength;
I will sing aloud of your steadfast love in the morning.
For you have been to me a fortress
and a refuge in the day of my distress.
O my Strength, I will sing praises to you,
for you, O God, are my fortress,
the God who shows me steadfast love.
Psalm 59:14-17 ESV
Believing I had completed the task of sharing from all 150 Psalms (see previous post) and ready to make a start on the theme of God as our Strength in the Psalms, I chose, after quite a lot of thought, to return to Psalm 59 – and found that it is (I hope) the one Psalm I had neglected; a draft made in 2012 was never finished though I had marked it so in my diary….
I was looking forward to revisiting some comments on the idea of God ‘laughing’ at his enemies (59:8) but found that the comments I recalled were made in regard to Psalm 2:4. This tried my own sense of humour anyway… but there’s a bit of (Godly?) serendipity about it too, I think. It came as a timely reminder of our dependence on God, of our fallibility in even our best efforts; of our need for God’s Strength in our weakness.
In His great Grace, God is willing to make up what we find lacking in ourselves, and to bring us back again (and again) to the places of our failures and meet us there, as He met Peter one morning on the lakeshore, not with the derisive laugh that he saves for his enemies (and ours) but with a smile (and maybe breakfast). At such times surely we are right to praise Him singing (if even just between Him and us) gratefully and joyfully for His steadfast love and faithfulness.
As for those other times, when greater trials come, when prowling dogs truly do set to barking, well, we must sing all the louder. God is our Strength and our fortress.
“But (God) said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” 2 Corinthians 12:9 ESV