Why I Stopped at Psalm 32

As I am working through my chronological Bible reading plan, I was *supposed* to read several Psalms today, in order to stay on track. But that didn’t happen. When I got to Psalm 32, it hit me so hard that I knew my Bible reading was done for the day. I needed to stop reading, put down my Bible, journal, and pray.

So that’s what I did.

And after doing that I felt like I needed to share my thoughts with you. Hence, this blog. Before I share the verses that impacted me so much, let me frame it….

Kids love to build forts. It’s in their DNA. Forts aren’t a boy thing or a girl thing. They are a kid thing. For example, this past weekend Faith & Evelyn spent a few hours upstairs in Faith’s bedroom building a fort. All they needed were two blankets, the side of a bed, one random nail in the wall where a blanket could be hung from, and part of a curtain. Instant fort!

I remember making forts as a kid and I bet you do too. I’d spend hours in my fort — reading books…playing pretend…hiding from my parents…resting.

A fort is where everything is right in the world. It’s a place of safety. It’s where things are the way they are supposed to be.

And since those things are true, I believe grown-ups need forts too. But not ones made of blankets and curtains….

Psalm 32 uses imagery of “the rising of the mighty waters” (verse 6). As American Christians living in the 21st century, we read right past what King David is writing about. That’s why I love my NIV Study Bible. Because in a study note it explains how “mighty waters” is an ancient way to describe threatening forces or circumstances. In fact, this imagery is borrowed from ancient Near Eastern creation myths where dry land was a place of safety and security, while the mighty waters represented a constant threat to the security and well-being of humanity. In other words, the mighty waters represented the bad stuff in the world.

And the “mighty waters” “rise” in our lives from time to time, don’t they? A tragedy. An injury. A broken marriage vow. A bad report from the doctor. A disease. A sickness. A job loss. You name it.

Right after David writes about “the rising on the mighty waters” in verse 6, he talks about God in verse 7. This is the verse that nailed me between the eyes: “You are my hiding place; you will protect me from trouble and surround me with songs of deliverance.”

You are my hiding place…

David declares that God is our hiding place. He is our fort. But not one made of blankets and curtains. Not one where we have to play pretend. Not one where we have to imagine that everything is ok.

This is a hiding place that we “go” to in prayer. Where we can be honest with what is going on in our lives. Where we can be real. Where we can be still and simply know that He is God. Where we can find rest. Where we can find hope. Where we can believe that although God didn’t cause the mighty waters to rise in our lives, He will bring good out of their rising.

May God become our “hiding place.” May we go there often.

***Join us this Sunday at The Eastside Vineyard Church. I’ll be preaching the passage where Jesus asks a couple disciples: “Can you drink this cup?” In other words, the Christian life is no bed of roses. It can be tough. But it’s the only way to live. February 3. 10:30am. More info at tevchurch.org***

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About Dan Kopp

In 2010 Dan and Kellie felt the call by God to plant a church somewhere in Macomb County, Michigan. Several months later The Eastside Vineyard Church launched and currently meets inside Shelby Jr. High in Shelby Township. This blog began in the pre-launch phase of the church and has exceeded 50,000 hits. Thanks for reading!
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2 Responses to Why I Stopped at Psalm 32

  1. I just read several of your posts, and I’m very encouraged. Thanks so much for taking the time to write this Dan. Especially this one!
    I recently cleaned out one the the room in our house that had been a storage area for all of my old art supplies—the supplies that helped me earn a living for 15+ years. Now that room has become my “fort,” of sorts. It is so nice to have a little place to go connect with my true “hidding place”!

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