Psalm 27:13-14 (NKJV)
I would have lost heart, unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living. Wait on the Lord; Be of good courage, and He shall strengthen your heart; Wait, I say, on the Lord.
Have you ever driven behind the shopping center strip mall to the back alley where the stores receive deliveries? You might be surprised that the stores are actually a simple metal structure with a fancy façade. The “face” of the store may be fun, functional, or fancy, but the backend is just like all the others.
There’s a façade covering Christians today. We hide behind the picture of perfection. We either project it onto our faith family, or we think we have to live behind it. We walk around thinking that some of our brothers and sisters have never had their faith challenged, that sin has never touched their lips.
Or we think because we’re Christians that we need to be perfect. We struggle with silent sin. We live in fear of our enemies and fear that if we reach out for help, we’ll be condemned. We are drowning in our own doubts and fears of inadequacy. Some of us are going through some crushing circumstances—alone.
But that’s not what God wants for us. He gave us a book of friends who have been right where we are—in pain and in trying circumstances.
In today’s focus scripture, we see a real man who wants to give up, but he can’t. There’s a “thing” keeping him from giving into the doubts and fears.
God gave us His word to show us that “there is nothing new under the sun” (Ecclesiastes 1:9, NIV).
David, today’s psalmist, was not a perfect person. He wasn’t always upbeat and positive. His sin was often right behind him. But David was different. He was far from perfect, but he was honest with God and himself.
If you pieced together David’s timeline, you’d see that he was often in turmoil or danger. He went from wrestling lions and bears to years of being pursued by a crazy king to seeing his own son die to losing his wife’s respect to having his own children try to kill him.
In today’s psalm, we see a frequent prayer from David: “God, deliver me from my enemies because they seek my life.”
What kept David showing up in prayer? The “thing” Christians have.
By looking at the pattern of David’s life, you could almost certainly deduce that defeat was inevitable and that a faith failure was certain.
However, David had belief. And all Christians have it.
We have that “however” or “unless” as David uses here. “I would have lost heart, unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.”
David trusted the promise “in all things God works for the good of those who love Him.” (Romans 8:28, NIV).
David had an internal dependence on the hope God offers us. David had faith.
God didn’t give us faith so we would be perfect in our own strength. He gave us faith because He is perfect. He gave us faith so that we would rely on Him when we weren’t perfect. The “thing” we have is that we can believe God is working for us—always.
That’s what kept David showing up in prayer. That’s the “thing” that kept him getting up when he got knocked down.
Do you rely on that “thing” Christians have?