I give you thanks, O Lord, with my whole heart;Psalm 138, ESV
before the gods I sing your praise;
I bow down toward your holy temple
and give thanks to your name
for your steadfast love and your faithfulness,
for you have exalted above all things
your name and your word.
On the day I called, you answered me;
my strength of soul you increased
All the kings of the earth shall give you thanks, O Lord,
for they have heard the words of your mouth,
and they shall sing of the ways of the Lord,
for great is the glory of the Lord.
For though the Lord is high, he regards the lowly,
but the haughty he knows from afar.
Though I walk in the midst of trouble,
you preserve my life;
you stretch out your hand against the wrath of my enemies,
and your right hand delivers me.
The Lord will fulfill his purpose for me;
your steadfast love, O Lord, endures forever.
Do not forsake the work of your hands.
I don’t know about you but the last week has been an emotional rollercoaster. Everyday recently has escalated between being 100% fine and jolly to going to be terrified that when I wake up I won’t be able to leave my house or be physically near another human being. Now that society has almost locked down, I imagine that a lot of us are going through that same roller coaster. These are truly strange times that we are living in.
The thing is, as Christians, we have a relationship with the God who knows what is coming next. He knew that the coronavirus was coming and He knows how long it will last. This is something I am trying more and more to cling on to right now.
As I read Psalm 138, all of these thoughts were with me. I’d had a breakdown on the phone to my parents last week and was still feeling a bit of that fear. Yet these words had me smiling, laughing and crying all at once. God was reminding me of how He is above all things. He has exalted His name (I AM WHO I AM) and His Word (Jesus – John 1v1) above everything else. He is greater than coronavirus or any other pandemic/global problem.
Yet in the midst of His greatness, God still sees the lowly. The everyday folk, those who don’t think much of themselves, are regarded by God. The fact that His relationship with the haughty is “from afar” suggests that this regard is meant to be a closer relationship. In other words, despite His greatness, God still sees us and cares about what happens to us.
In fact, His care for us goes beyond just seeing us. The third stanza (technically verses 7 and 8 ) reminds us how God preserves us. Even when we are walking through trouble, which I think you could qualify the current situation as, His right hand delivers us. While this doesn’t mean that God will prevent us from dying, we know that through Jesus’ resurrection that we will spend eternity with God. Personally, I can’t think of a better way for God to preserve my life than eternity with Him, should that be what happens.
Ultimately, this Psalm is a reminder that God is in charge. He is above all things yet He chooses to love the lowly and to preserve those He loves. Whatever happens to us today, tomorrow or 70 years from now, it is God who is in charge and who’s purposes will be fulfilled.