Psalm 27- Part One (by Jen)
I used to be very afraid. I was afraid of axe-murderers, wars, prison camps, being abducted, having my kids be physically lost, having no money, getting a horrible illness, economic depression, having loved ones die in car crashes, famines, getting bitten by rabid squirrels….all sorts of fears, both those that had some chance of happening and those that had basically zero chance of happening. It didn’t matter that I knew some of them had almost no chance of happening, they were still possible and the feeling of fear was real and seemingly unconquerable. I first came to Ps. 27 trying to find victory over my copious fears. Though the start of the psalm held many confident proclamations of bravery, it was verse 4 that ripped me from the fearful place & instantly moved me. It was as if my heart said to me, “Why are you afraid? That is a distraction. This is where you want to be.”
One thing I ask from the Lord, this only do I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life.
My heart leapt at the appealing nature of the verse. I wanted permission to be in His house. I saw instantly that fear can hardly exist if I am in His house. I am in HIS HOUSE- what can threaten me there? God somehow revealed to me that it was only my own foolish choice to focus on potential, future problems that kept me in fear. God has no problems. Fear vanished for me nearly completely sometime after this realization. (I wish it were that way for everyone, or for every weakness I face, but that does not seem to be the case.) My concern, my focus was to be Him; with Him I have everything good and need not worry about anything bad because it is all in His hand and He has my best in mind always.
Prior to this, I thought literally the opposite: “What good is having God with me if bad things happen anyway? Where is the comfort or utility in that?” I couldn’t really see how it helped, except in a kind of “hope for the best and trust God” way. That was not concrete enough to be of much comfort to me. This psalm, particularly this verse, helped me to see that God is the meta-protection against evil. He is not just protecting me, but He is protection. Just as Christ is the Way, the Truth, and the Life, so He is the Protection. Anything bad that happens to me, since bad things will still surely happen, already has a solution, already has comfort, already has limits. It is not simply instance-by-instance, but a covering for all of life. His covering protection brings hope, comfort, and peace. Nothing can truly touch me, because there is nothing He will not conquer in the end. Any pain is temporary. If I am in Him, I will always eventually win because He wins. I cannot be vanquished because He cannot be vanquished. I am in hidden in Him. His victory is my victory.
In His presence, I have no cause to fear.