In the Old Testament we read about a difficult season for King David. His son, Absalom, wanted to be king so he tried turning the people of Israel away from his father. Absalom then gathered an army together, chased after his dad and his army, to defeat them and ultimately to kill his dad so he could be king.
The COVID-19 pandemic has been hard in so many ways but what David was facing was emotionally and relationally painful in every way. David wrote Psalm chapter 3 while he was fleeing from his son. I think the power of this Psalm can speak to us as we go through hard days.
In verse 3 David declares the faithfulness of God during difficult times: “You, Lord, are a shield around me, my glory, the One who lifts my head high. I call out to the Lord, and he answers me from His holy mountain.” I love that description of a faithful God who “lifts my head high.” He doesn’t merely sit and observe from his holy mountain, he comes in a personal and comforting way and lifts our head high.
When we receive troubling, difficult, painful news what do we do? Our head drops and we look down. When we are discouraged or lonely, when we walk, our head looks down. When an athlete loses a big game and walks off the field, he or she hangs her head.
What does God do for us? He lifts our head! I love that. I cannot imagine how my family and I would have made it through this last year had God not held our heads high.
Today I was reminded of the beautiful passage of Scripture in Lamentations 3, verses 22 through 24. “Because of the Lord’s great love, we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. I say to myself, 'The Lord is my portion; therefore I will wait for him.'"
I encourage you to pull out a piece of paper and start writing down how has God provided for you in the last 12 months. I did this today. Here is the start of my list: God brought my wife and I closer together than ever before, God healed my wife physically, God loved me through insecurity, fear, and doubt, God brought new and meaningful friendships into my life (not sure how I would have survived without these brothers), God provided financially in miraculous and unexpected ways, God saved our son’s life during a motorcycle incident, God provided new opportunities for my wife and me to serve and impact people for him. In the middle of a pandemic God showed me his faithfulness!
How has God provided for you? What is his record of work in your life? It is much easier to identify the hurt and the obstacles but when you identify and thank God for his faithfulness it changes your outlook, and you realize ways he has held your head high. I am grateful. God bless you! You are loved!
Jon is a pastor and leadership coach and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.