Sunday, October, 22nd, 2017

September 29, 2009

Beauty for Ashes

Our Sustaining Friend

In a letter to a friend, Dr. R. A. Forrest wrote these words: “Don’t fail me now.” It was almost a desperate plea for this person not to forget his promise and to do what they had discussed.

Have you ever known the heartache that comes from feeling let down by someone you love and have trusted? In desperation, you also may have wanted to say, “Please don’t fail me now.” In Psalm 55, David wrote: “ My heart is in anguish within me, and the errors of death have fallen upon me. Fear and trembling come upon me, and horror has overwhelmed me. I said, ‘Oh, that I had wings like a dove! I would fly away and be at rest’” (vs. 4-6). We wonder what has brought such stress into David’s life? Was he in danger? Had he taken a wrong turn and ended up in some great peril?

Read further and you will discover the reason for the heaviness of his heart. Someone he trusted had betrayed him. “For it is not an enemy who reproaches me, then I could bear it; nor is it one who hates me who has exalted himself against me, then I could hide myself from him. But it is you, a man my equal, my companion and my familiar friend: we who had sweet fellowship together” (12-14).

To David, this assault was far greater than if his dire enemy had lifted a bow, drawn an arrow, and shot at close range. It came unexpectedly and bore a greater impact. On top of it all, it came when his popularity was at low ebb—when he needed a friend to help him shoulder the shock and disappointment that came as a result of his son Absalom seeking to overthrow him and gain the kingdom.

More than likely, each one of us can remember a time when we could identify with David’s plight. The sting of rejection and the discouragement that sets in from being treated unfairly tempts us to cry out, “Please don’t fail me.” How did David handle the situation? There was only one way. “As for me,” he writes, “I shall call upon God and the Lord will save me. . . . He will redeem my soul in peace from the battle which is against me” (vs. 16, 18). David’s heart and faith was firmly grounded in God.

Without a doubt, disappointment will come. Circumstances will turn out badly, people will abandon their care for us, and loved ones may even fail us. But God never will. When we keep our focus set on Him, we will never suffer defeat. We may face blistering heartache, but He will always be there to rally us on with His unending love (vs. 22).

Cast your burden upon the Lord and He will sustain you (Psalm 55:22).

(Taken from the online devotional book Grace in The Wilderness © 2008 tfchistory.com)

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