Psalm 27 is a very powerful, encouraging, and real Psalm.
Psalm 27 was the first chapter in the entire Bible that I made my children rehearse and remember when they were young. Even as children, I wanted them to always know there was nothing to be afraid of because, with GOD, you’ll always win – even when people try to come against you. I wanted them to know they could trust GOD to provide for them now, not just in Heaven.
David pens Psalm 27 with an introduction recalling what The Lord has done for him in times past, reaffirming his faith in The Lord, and progresses to petition the Lord for deliverance from a new set of enemies.
If it’s one thing I love about David, it’s his vulnerability with The Lord. As he does in many other Psalms, just before David closes the Psalm, he makes a brutally honest, vulnerable, entirely real, and relatable statement in verse 13:
I would have despaired had I not believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord
In the land of the living.
Can’t you just feel the vulnerability, the emotion of that statement? This is not a statement of machismo from an arrogant man, but a simple statement made by a man humble enough to admit his life was hard sometimes, more than he thought he could stand. This statement makes it clear that for David, some days were a fight for emotional fortitude and without the Lord, he may have fallen into despair (the complete loss or absence of hope).
David lived through many tough times and a read of Psalms will show that he was a man well acquainted with emotional trauma. David often spoke about his fear of being hunted and killed on multiple occasions, the heartbreak of being abandoned and betrayed by those he loved, the pain of being lied on, and the guilt and self-pity that wracked him when he sinned.
To have experienced the type of emotionally traumatic, life or death events, on the level and at the frequency that David did, I can only imagine that sometimes despair came knocking – no banging – on the door of his mind demanding entry.
David’s life was filled with him coming through one terrible thing, only for the next horrifying thing to be right on its heels…
Does that sound familiar? Have you ever lived through a time or season where it seemed like you could just barely escape one devasting situation before the next one was there ringing your line? Emotionally triggering and traumatic situations cutting so deeply and so frequently that it seems like you can’t catch your breath…
I’m sure you have. I’m sure you can remember at least one time you’ve lived through pervasive trauma (trauma that seems inescapable, as if it’s coming at you from every direction).
For many of us, that was 2020 and 2021.
From the invasive attack of the COVID-19 pandemic to the staggering demonstrations of blatant racism to the personal devastation of family and friends lost to COVID, we each experienced a barrage of emotional trauma and loss.
My friend, despair is not unusual, unheard of, or unrealistic after you’ve experienced the depth of emotional trauma, especially pervasive trauma, that we’ve lived in and through over the last couple of years.
2020 and 2021 was a time of pervasive trauma if ever there was a time. I understand and my heart aches for those that hurt and were hurt so badly and so deeply during this time. It does.
But may I encourage us today?
After David’s brief display of vulnerability, weakness, and maybe even a bit of fatigue resulting from all the emotional trauma he’d experienced, David ends Psalm 27 with a powerful declaration of faith:
Wait for and confidently expect the Lord; Be strong and let your heart take courage; Yes, wait for and confidently expect the Lord.
As we navigate the residue of 2020 and 2021, the emotional trauma left with us and in us, let us follow in David's footsteps and wait on The Lord. Let us wait, confidently expecting The Lord to show His goodness to us while we yet live!
I believe when David said he believed to see the goodness in the land of the living (v. 13b), what he was saying was that he remembered the promises he received from The Lord, and it was those promises he believed he’d live to see. David was confessing his belief that The Lord would keep him alive until The Lord fulfilled every one of the promises He’d made to David!
What has GOD promised you? What goodness did He promise you’d see while you yet live?
My friend, GOD has spoken that we have moved into a new season, a new time: a time of favor and prosperity. Like David, let THIS be what we place our hope in, our confidence in – that we WILL see the favor and prosperity of The Lord in THIS season!
I know the past couple of years were hard and they left some scars but know this: YOU’RE GOING TO LIVE TO SEE THE GOODNESS OF THE LORD IN THE LAND OF THE LIVING!!
In the words of gospel recording artist, J.J. Hairston, “You’re going to live to see it happen!” Knowing and believing this, let us be strong and let our hearts take courage! Yes, let us wait for and confidently expect the Lord. GOD will show up and make good on His Word!
Let’s get and stay in faith, Children of GOD!! GOD’s going to do it!!
Until next time,