Weakness is not the big danger to avoid. What’s to be avoided is your delusion of strength. Don’t fear the moments that are big and scary. Fear the moments where you think you can handle the big and scary on your own. That’s the real danger.
When we open up Psalm 27:1-5, here’s what we read:
“The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?
When evildoers assail me to eat up my flesh, my adversaries and foes, it is they who stumble and fall.
Though an army encamp against me, my heart shall not fear; though war arise against me, yet I will be confident.
One thing I have asked of the Lord, that I will seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life. to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord and to inquire in his temple.
For he will hide me in his shelter in the day of trouble; he will conceal me under the cover of his tent; he will lift me high upon a rock.
Ok, let’s get something straight here: the world is a big and scary place and it can make us seem so small, so fragile, so weak, and so insignificant. We can end up facing some pretty big giants that make us tremble.
And, that’s ok. It’s ok to admit when we’re afraid; when we’re scared; when we’re inadequate to face those giants on our own. We’re not meant to do it anyway.
The Psalmist here understands that. When imminent danger is on the horizon, King David cries out to God. It’s simply too big for him to take on himself. He cries out to God and then remembers that, since God is for him and God is on his side, he can be confident that all will be ok. He doesn’t have to be afraid.
I tihnk the issue with so many of us is that we think we can take on things that are bigger than us. We want to prove to the world that we are not weak. It’s in our human nature to want to prove ourselves, yet, what do we gain when we do so? What do we gain when we slay the dragon? SOmething bigger is just going to come along. There will come a point in your life that you’re not going to be able to slay the dragon. It’ll take you down.
And I also think that an issue with so many of us is that we’re not aware of the delusion of our own strength. We know that life is big out there, but we can surely face it and conquer it through making lots of money, through having the perfect marriage, through success and reputation, through power, but then…it all begins to fade away. We’re left with nothing. We find out that what we chose for our weapon was simply inadequate.
But that’s another conversation for another day. Let’s talk about you and some tangible things that you’re going through.
Perhaps it takes a lot of courage to wake up and get out of bed each morning because of crippling anxiety. Perhaps you are haunted by a decision from your past. Perhaps you’ve got an exam coming up that you’re totally unprepared for. Perhaps you made yourself a fool on social media and everyone at your school knows it. Perhaps you have tryouts for varsity and you just don’t seem like you’re good enough. Perhaps you are constantly being called fat or a slut or anything else and it just tears you down. You wish for them to know that you do have feelings and that the past doesn’t define you.
What’s your giant? At some point you’ve got to come to a point in your life where you realize that you weren’t meant to tackle life’s pressures and giants on your own. If life is going by smooth, be aware of self-confidence. It won’t last long. And if life is piling heavy stones over you, be confident that God is for you.
I think that this Psalm is trying to warn us against being confident that we can take on a world that’s bigger than us. It’s trying to communicate that we don’t have to fear a world that’s bigger than us because God is bigger than the world.
We may feel like we’re on top of the world right now, but that’s exactly where the enemy wants you. And the enemy doesn’t actually want you on top of the world. He wants to crush you. But he has to somehow get you to be tricked into thinking that you’ve got life’s matters in your own hands and under control. Fear that.
The Psalm is teaching us that, when we rest our confidence in God alone, we have absolutely nothing to fear. If all were to be taken away from us, one thing that the world cannot take from us is what we have secured in God through Jesus.