1 God is our place of safety. He gives us strength. He is always there to help us in times of trouble. 2 The earth may fall apart. The mountains may fall into the middle of the sea. But we will not be afraid. 3 The waters of the sea may roar and foam. The mountains may shake when the waters rise. But we will not be afraid. Selah 4 God’s blessings are like a river. They fill the city of God with joy. That city is the holy place where the Most High God lives. 5 Because God is there, the city will not fall. God will help it at the beginning of the day. 6 Nations are in disorder. Kingdoms fall. God speaks, and the people of the earth melt in fear. 7 The Lord who rules over all is with us. The God of Jacob is like a fort to us. Selah 8 Come and see what the Lord has done. See the places he has destroyed on the earth. 9 He makes wars stop from one end of the earth to the other. He breaks every bow. He snaps every spear. He burns every shield with fire. 10 He says, “Be still, and know that I am God. I will be honored among the nations. I will be honored in the earth.” 11 The Lord who rules over all is with us. The God of Jacob is like a fort to us. Selah
I am helped by the way I see the psalmist encouraging himself and his people. I love that the first word of this Psalm is “God.” And indeed, that the focus of this Psalm, as per the first word, continues to be God. God as strength, God as present, God as help, God within the city, God with the people of God, God the fortress, God in charge of all the affairs of the nations, God as all-powerful. I see that this is a powerful meditation, with encouraging and settling consequences for my heart.
As I write this reflection, the very exhortation of verse 10 is becoming my reality – the fears, concerns, and worries of my heart are stilled in the knowledge that God is exalted above all the nations, and all the earth. And I find a simple actionable encouragement; that when my heart is troubled, and when my mind becomes unclear due to fears, worries, and concerns…my meditation must turn to who God is. God as my strength, God as present with me, God as my help, God within the city I dwell in, God with us His people, God our fortress, God in charge of all the affairs of the nations, God as the all-powerful one. And whilst this does nothing right here and now to change my circumstances as such, it gives me a stillness of mind and heart, as I let these truths arrest my deepest being. And in this stillness, I can consider my circumstances afresh…with clarity and the faith of God who is with me and who will be exalted in my midst! With this kind of stilled perspective, I can take well considered and faith-filled action.
God, help me to keep coming back to my first and highest meditation, throughout my days. You, God, are my first and highest meditation, and as I consider long enough how great you are, my heart is stilled, and I can consider well my life, and my choices, and with confidence move forward into what you’ve called me to! Amen
Written by Ps. Rob Waugh