O taste and see that the Lord is good; happy are those who take refuge in him. Psalm 34:8
After a rest-filled, family-filled, “stay-cation” of sorts, I’m back to the routine I have grown accustomed to. I am grateful for the time to step out of routine, to rediscover some lost passions, to try some new things, and to reconnect – not only with friends and family, but with myself and the One who created me. But I am also grateful to be able to step back into the routine – for it gives me a renewed sense of purpose and passion.
Psalm 34, of David, was written from anything but routine. David was seeking deliverance from the trouble he had encountered, and his feigned madness in front of Abimelech was the “rescue routine” that gave him cause to be praiseworthy of God’s deliverance. Perhaps the only thing routine in this psalm is David’s self-identifying with fear and God’s deliverance from that fear. It’s a pattern:
Name the fear. Cry out for deliverance from the fear. Embrace the Divine rescue mission. Take refuge. Give praise to the One who delivered.
I wonder just how difficult it was for David to even just name the fear and in so doing, embrace the fear. I’m pretty sure that I spend a good portion of my time suppressing my fears. Oh – it’ll go away, I tell myself. It’s no big deal… That can’t really be true, I tell myself. When we look out into the hurt and brokenness of this world, it is often the practice of humanity that if we are not directly affected by a glo-cal event, it’s easy to walk away from it and not worry about it or be afraid of it.
Nuclear bombs aimed to cause destruction of human lives. Famine, sickness and death caused by unjust caretakers of peoples rights. Unsheltered, hungry mouths and dis-eased minds on the banks of Cherry Creek. Do we or can we let ourselves be vulnerable to these hurts and evils of the world? Or is the fear of being overcome by its brokenness cause us to remain motionless to the cries for help from these injustices?
Fear is a game changer I think. I read an article the other day that suggested that instead of perceiving fear as the opposite of faith, what if we let our fear inform our faith, or our faith inform our fear? That together, fear and faith can propel us into action, to stand up bold and challenge the injustices and evils of the world.
I think that’s what the psalmist is talking about when he says, “taste and see that the Lord is good,” and that happiness is indeed found in the refuge of the Lord. Let us each embrace and taste the sweet sweet goodness of the Lord through acts of courage and compassion to face our fears and yet to stand firm as we wait on the refuge of the Lord.
Peace. peace. prL