The last couple of weeks have been hectic. As the days drew longer and fatigue set in, I unconsciously found myself relying more and more on my own strength to get through all the varied tasks that needed to be completed each day. In the midst of busyness; it was easy to lose the joy that comes from complete reliance on Jesus.
In the midst of this, I was led to ponder upon Psalms 20:7: “Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the LORD our God.“
This Psalm was written by David at a time when Israel was at war with the Syrians – an enemy with much better resources and technology (i.e. horses and chariots) than Israel could ever dream of owning since the Exodus. It was in the midst of facing impossible odds against this powerful foe that David spoke of the foolishness of trusting in chariots and horses and the wisdom of trusting in the name of our Lord for battle. How wise he was to claim the blessing, power and victory of God before fighting a battle! Picture David waiting for the battle, girding himself for the conflict, and writing this Psalm as a part of that preparation. I imagine his faith brought the needed courage to his fighting men as well.
While Psalm 20:7 has been a familiar verse to me, I wondered why I did not seem to remember the heart and faith behind why it was written, nor did I claim the verse like David did in the midst of a tough season. This, in spite of the fact that I could already recite the words in my mind. What made David different?
David was not unfamiliar with facing constant threats from adversaries. Known for his bravery, David had singlehandedly defended sheep from bears or lions; took on the mighty Philistine warrior Goliath; and attacked and rescued cities from the Philistines.
However, it was not in such courage that David placed his trust. He had developed a firm foundation in knowing the power and deliverance of God because he guarded his personal time with the Lord steadfastly (Psalm 27:4), and developed a deep relationship with God such that He knew the heart of God intimately (1 Samuel 13:14).
Faced with the Syrians, David hence did not fear because his time spent with the Lord had developed in him a constant familiarity and quiet confidence in God’s power and deliverance beyond what his eye could see. It gave him an uncomplicated, child-like faith that trusted in the Father’s heart.
And so I was reminded that when I am busy and fatigued, it is too easy to NOT keep up that spiritual discipline of spending time with Jesus daily. Unfortunately, what I do not do can become habitual as well, and it does affect how I interact and behave in other spheres of life – more coming from my own human effort and less from the result of seeking and waiting on the Lord.
So as the Spirit chided, I was reminded to return to the Lord once again by putting my faith in the Eternal Hope that’s beyond what I could ever see or imagine.
May we always be reminded as well to exercise such simple, “child-like” faith; because faith in a Perfect Father was never meant to be complicated.
By Zeke Gao, Deacon (YCKC Bulletin 12&13 March 2016)