“I have set the Lord always before me; because he is at my right hand, I shall not be shaken. Therefore my heart is glad, and my whole being rejoices; my flesh also dwells secure” (Psalms 16:8-9 ESV).
I remember well the scene from several TV shows and movies. The small protagonist is shaking before the big bully but is standing his ground. Then the bully begins to shake and backs off. Our protagonist is unaware that big brother, or perhaps a large friend has taken up position behind him. The bully scurries off with his tail between his legs, not because the protagonist has frightened him, but because the protagonist had backup.
David serves as a great example. When he faced off against the mighty Goliath, he didn’t step onto the battlefield with armor; he didn’t grab a spear; he took up neither sword nor shield. What David did take was the Name, presence and strength of God. He had experienced His protection before both the lion and the bear (1 Samuel 17:36).
In the 16th Psalm, David reveals his secret. He sticks close to the Lord.
I must confess that I get busy with the things I must do to provide for my family. I get caught up in the mindless drone of the television. I tell myself that I just need to unwind from a long day. My focus is on me and what I want. “I’ve earned this time to myself.” But the subliminal programming that my conscience feeds on isn’t the only negative; it’s not even the worst!
Me time is time spent and wasted. It is time that I can never get back, time that my focus is not on God. I think that I have come to take Him, and the salvation that He has given me, for granted.
David said that he “set the Lord always before [him].” He discovered that which Solomon later acknowledged, “there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother (Proverbs 18:24 ESV). He learned that walking with God brings security, not a security that keeps us from trials and tribulations, but a security that strengthens and preserves us through the trials and tribulations. It was God’s presence in his life that gave him a “glad heart”. He found his “whole being” rejoicing!
We don’t need a doctor to tell us that stress and anxiety can have very negative effects on our physical bodies in addition to the toll they take on our mind and emotions. It can be devastating. But by his life spent in constant fellowship with God, David found that he not only enjoys His strength and protection, but that his “flesh also dwells secure.”
All day, every day, we are bombarded with ads for the latest and greatest health supplements and exercise regiments that promise health to our bodies. And I have tried some of them. But nothing will bring you more peace than time spent in God’s presence. He promises to have your back, better than any wingman ever could.