In a world filled with uncertainties, we can be sure of one thing—God is on our side.
We might not feel like that’s true when tough circumstances come our way—like when the car breaks down, one of our kids goes off the rails, our marriage goes through a tense time, a loved one receives a dismal medical diagnosis, a natural disaster steals our home and belongings, or our job demands more hours than we can offer.
David, the psalmist, was well acquainted with tough circumstances.
King Saul and the Philistines hunted him. Some people slandered him; others tried to kill him. He faced relentless pressure o every side.
David expressed his situation with these words: “O God, have mercy on me, for people are hounding me. My foes attack me all day long. I am constantly hounded by those who slander me, and many are boldly attacking me.” (Psalm 56:1-2 NLT)
Words like “constantly hounded,” “foes attack me all day long,” and “many are boldly attacking me” speak to his desperation. His circumstances gave him no time to stop, catch his breath, and prepare for the next onslaught. The attacks just kept coming. How easy it would be to assume that God had turned His back toward him, but David didn’t go there.
David admitted that the onslaught scared him and then declared, “When I am afraid, I put my trust in you.” By speaking those words, he spoke truth over himself, and truth inspired a fresh perspective. It helped him reframe his situation and gave him an aha moment: “Wait a minute! I trust in God, right? So why should I be afraid?” (Psalm 56:4) David was unsure of what his next day held, but he was sure of one thing: God was for him and not against him.
Here are three reasons for why David knew God was on his side:
- David knew God was on his side because he’d experienced His protection and power in the past. God had helped him kill lions and bears while guarding his father’s sheep. He’d also helped David take out the giant Goliath with one well-aimed stone. So, while David didn’t know what tactics his enemies would try next or how long their attacks would last, he knew God was big enough to thwart their efforts.
We can rest assured that God is on our side, too. Circumstances might suggest otherwise, but we regain courage by reflecting on the past and recalling specific experiences when God protected and provided for us. He looked after us then, and He’ll do it again because He never changes.
- David knew God was on his side because he understood His love. He said, “You keep track of all my sorrows. You have collected all my tears in your bottle.You have recorded each one in your book.” (Psalm 56:8Psalm 56:8)
We, too, can know that God is on our side when we trust in the depth of His love. It runs so deep that words can’t adequately describe it. That’s why He demonstrated it for us when He sent Jesus to pay the penalty for our sin. Amazing, right? Nothing will ever separate us from His love. Nothing.
- David knew God was on his side because he knew God’s Word. Three times in Psalm 56, he says, “I praise Your word.” His confidence in God’s ability and willingness to help him came from knowing the truth about who God declared Himself to be and the promises He’d made to His people.
We can know with certainty that God is on our side when we dig into His Word and cling to His promises. He never leaves us. He equips us to do whatever He calls us to do. He strengthens us and surrounds us with His lovingkindness.
May I pray for you?
“God, thank You for the many ways You show us that You are on our side. Help us take these things to heart as David did. Help us remain steadfast in the truth when it feels like life is against us. We know that in this life we will face trouble, but we know You are on our side. Help us trust and not be afraid. In Jesus’ name, amen.
Be encouraged through the truth presented in this song “God is On My Side.”
Find encouragement, too, in my latest devotional books, available wherever Christian books are sold.