Psalm 57:1 – Have mercy on me, my God, have mercy on me,
for in you I take refuge.
I will take refuge in the shadow of your wings
until the disaster has passed.
2 I cry out to God Most High,
to God, who vindicates me.
3 He sends from heaven and saves me,
rebuking those who hotly pursue me,
God sends forth his love and his faithfulness.
4 I am in the midst of lions;
I am forced to dwell among ravenous beasts—
men whose teeth are spears and arrows,
whose tongues are sharp swords.
5 Be exalted, O God, above the heavens;
let your glory be over all the earth.
6 They spread a net for my feet —
I was bowed down in distress.
They dug a pit in my path—
but they have fallen into it themselves.
7 My heart, O God, is steadfast,
my heart is steadfast;
I will sing and make music.
8 Awake, my soul!
Awake, harp and lyre!
I will awaken the dawn.
9 I will praise you, Lord, among the nations;
I will sing of you among the peoples.
10 For great is your love, reaching to the heavens;
your faithfulness reaches to the skies.
11 Be exalted, O God, above the heavens;
let your glory be over all the earth. (NIV)
Before I became a pastor, I was a park ranger. Naturally, I spent a lot of time outdoors. I also had a lot of experience with wild animals. Of all my experiences with wild animals, I was only attacked once. Now, you might be thinking that it was by something exciting like a bear or a mountain lion. Well, believe it or not, the only animal that ever attacked me was a Ruffed Grouse. A Ruffed Grouse is woodland bird that as an adult weighs in around two pounds! The attack happened one day when I was hiking through the woods and walked too close to the mama Grouse’s clutch of chicks. Mama Grouse was relentless! Over and over again she would fly towards my face with her talons extended. Needless to say, I backtracked at double speed!
I share this story because ever since that day, the opening verse of this psalm has held for me a special meaning: “I will take refuge in the shadow of your wings until the disaster has passed.” I used to think this verse quite strange – just how safe could the shadow of wings actually be? Well, I found out that they can be a very safe place for baby birds!
The psalmist must have known something of the protective nature of a mother bird, for he used the imagery to convey God’s protective nature. Have you ever stopped to consider that God wants to protect us from danger? God is not only faithful to us, God is fiercely loyal, and has gone to great lengths to protect us from evil. God has given us God’s Word to guide and teach us, as well as God’s Holy Spirit to lead us into all truth (John 16:13). To seal our victory over death, God has even given us a Savior through Jesus!
Today, let us give thanks for refuge in the shadow of God’s wings!
Posted by Ramón Torres