Still feeling raw from my prayer and musings from yesterday, I sat in my study this morning staring at Psalm 11, the next Psalm in my daily prayer cycle. David must have been having a similar struggle with real or perceived voices telling him to bail on a situation.
“I’ve already taken refuge in the Lord, how can you tell me to run away now? If the foundations come apart, what can the righteous do?” (Ps. 11:1, 3 my paraphrase)
“Escape, for Christians, is faithless”, says Eugene Peterson. “It means that they have succumbed to the ‘nothing-can-be-done’ disease” and they resort to saving their own skin (or soul). David does not tolerate such council because “The LORD is in his holy temple; the LORD is on his heavenly throne”. Why do we so often lose heart?
I’m not the only one who must fight the temptation to despair of things beyond our control. I hear it in the comments all around me. I hear the sighs and resignation as people watch their world change before their eyes. What can we do?
Still months away from Lee’s surrender, America was in a fight for its life. Divided by civil war, people everywhere despaired of peace. Bowed under the weight of personal tragedy and feeling the despair of his fellow man, Henry W. Longfellow penned these words:
And in despair I bowed my head
“There is no peace on earth,” I said,
“For hate is strong and mocks the song
Of peace on earth, good will to men.”
Good may cave to the pressure and strength of evil. Unrighteousness could win the day, then what will we do?
Then pealed the bells more loud and deep:
“God is not dead, nor doth He sleep;
The wrong shall fail, the right prevail
With peace on earth, good will to men.”
What can the righteous do? Take refuge in the Lord trusting that we are in good hands.