Psalm 91: Comfort in Times of Distress
It's fascinating to me that in times of trouble, pandemic, distress, or sickness, we seek the comfort of our Heavenly Father. What makes us reach out in these times?
Is it that we are experiencing some form of brokenness, and we realize our need for our Redeemer?
Is it because of what the perfect, spotless Lamb of God did for us on the execution stake?
Is it because we were created to seek Him, and in doing so, we find Him?
Is it because during these times, we realize just how precious life really is?
I believe the reasons are all of the above.
The next question would then be: when we come out of these situations, do we still seek Him with the same passion and enthusiasm? We can, and we must!
One of the most comforting Scriptures of all time is Psalm 91. It illustrates the promise that as long as we dwell in the shelter of the Most High, our comfort IS the Lord! (No matter what we are going through, what we are in, or what we are coming out of.)
"1 He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will abide in the shadow of the Almighty. 2 I will say to the Lord, "My refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust." 3 For he will deliver you from the snare of the fowler and from the deadly pestilence. 4 He will cover you with his pinions, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness is a shield and buckler. 5 You will not fear the terror of the night, nor the arrow that flies by day, 6 nor the pestilence that stalks in darkness, nor the destruction that wastes at noonday. 7 A thousand may fall at your side, ten thousand at your right hand, but it will not come near you. 8 You will only look with your eyes and see the recompense of the wicked. 9 Because you have made the Lord your dwelling place—the Most High, who is my refuge 10 no evil shall be allowed to befall you, no plague come near your tent. 11 For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways. 12 On their hands, they will bear you up, lest you strike your foot against a stone. 13 You will tread on the lion and the adder; the young lion and the serpent you will trample underfoot. 14 "Because he holds fast to me in love, I will deliver him; I will protect him, because he knows my name. 15 When he calls to me, I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble, I will rescue him and honor him. 16 With long life I will satisfy him and show him my salvation." [ESV]
Have you ever been to the hospital facing surgery and were nervous about one thing or another? This scenario is one good example of a stressful situation where Psalm 91 ministers to us!
One of the many things the Lord taught me through my hospital experience is to understand that we are NEVER alone. No matter who we have around us who love us and are there for us during trying times, God wants us to know HE is present and that HIS rod and staff comfort us. If we continue to pursue HIM passionately, whether things are great, not so good, or very bad, HE is — and ever will be — with us.
Psalm 91 is often read by rabbis when someone dies. That's wonderful; however, I believe this scripture is crucial for the living as well! There are times when we need to know our ABBA is there for us.
In verse 4, it says His faithfulness is a shield and a buckler. I find the definition of a 'buckler' interesting:
A portable shield ( 2 Samuel 22:31; 1 Chronicles 5:18 ).
A shield surrounding the person; the target or round form; used once figuratively ( Psalms 91:4 )
A large shield protecting the whole body ( Psalms 35:2; Ezek. 23:24; 26:8 ).
A shield is specifically protection against evil and falsities.
Used in defensive warfare, varying at different times and under different circumstances in size, form, and material ( 1 Samuel 17:7 ; 2 Sam 1:21 ; 1 Kings 10:17 ; 1 Chronicles 12:8 1 Chronicles 12:24 1 Chronicles 12:34 ; Isaiah 22:6 ; Ezekiel 39:9 ; Nahum 2:3 ).
Used figuratively of God and of earthly princes as the defenders of their people ( Genesis 15:1; Deuteronomy 33:29; Psalms 33:20; 84:11 ). Faith is compared to a shield ( Ephesians 6:16 ).
Shields were usually "anointed" ( Isaiah 21:5 ), in order to preserve them, and at the same time make the missiles of the enemy glide off them more easily. (WOW, that's an encouragement for us).
What an incredible picture the Lord paints here for us! We do not know why we have to endure so much in our life. I'm sure some of the things we go through are a result of our own poor choices, some because of demonic attacks, and all are meant to bring God the glory. The reason for the trial is insignificant; how we confront and endure it is the true testimony.
My prayer: Lord,
I come to you today and empty myself before you. Lord, I believe that with you and through you, I am not alone. Whatever the journey is that I am on now, I submit all fleshly, human feelings to you and ask that I would react in the spirit instead. I pray not only for myself but for others who are going through some challenges in their lives right now during this unprecedented time. Lord, send Psalm 91 to comfort us and to be a shield and buckler around us. Most of all, Lord, show us that we are never alone. Thank you for your faithfulness to all of us, Lord. Amen.
Thanks for listening and letting me share what's on my heart!
In Yeshua's love,