“With your help I can advance against a troop;
with my God I can scale a wall.”
Psalm 18:29 (NIV)
In Psalm 18, David is expressing his praise to the God who has delivered him from all of his enemies and brought an end to his battles. God has helped him in such a way that he is able to say, “The Lord is my rock. The Lord is my fortress. The Lord is my deliverer.” Psalm 18 is a song from the heart of a man who is expressing thanksgiving for how active God has been in his life. He literally sings about God being his shield and horn. He talks about God hearing his cries and defeating his enemies. He talks about how God thundered from heaven in defense of his servant.
What catches my attention in this Psalm is that for 28 verses, David spends most of the time talking about the strength and might and power of God, but interestingly, in verse 29, he makes a bold statement about his perception of his own strength from having observed the activity and the strength of his God. David reveals how all he has experienced with God makes him feel about himself. He says he feels like he can run against a troop and leap over a wall. He is feeling empowered, energized, and grateful.
David’s view of God informed his view of himself.
After a lifetime of struggling battles, a lifetime of emotional landmines, a lifetime of mixed experiences and encounters, David reflects back on all of it, and feels an immense confidence.
And I found myself praying after musing over this verse: “God, whatever You did in David's life to make the Psalmist confess that this is how he feels … whatever You did that made him feel so strong and so unstoppable, so confident and forward-thinking, I need You to do that in me. Speak to me, work in me, minister around me, reveal Yourself to me, so that when I emerge from this or any encounter, I too can believe that I can smash through an army and scale a wall.”
What this Psalm reminds us of, brothers and sisters, is the fact that how you see God shapes how you see yourself.