Image source: CampWyoming
‘I am the captain of my soul’ – writes William Henley in his famous poem ‘Invictus’. Henley is right in that I have the power to choose to follow the wind or to go against the winds of life. I find though that my power to choose could sometimes be meaningless when the winds of life are so overwhelming, when the winds of life are so strong that they lift me off my feet and dump me where they wish.
King David in the Bible experienced what it means to be overwhelmed by the winds of life. We read his story in the book of 1 Samuel Chapter 17 how he killed Goliath and all of a sudden he became a national hero more popular than King Saul. A short while later we read about David fleeing from King Saul who had become jealous and wanted to kill him. David flees to Gath, the hometown of Goliath.
We read in 1 Samuel Chapter 21 that David pretended to be mad, so that the king of Gath would not kill him. Life had become so overwhelming for David, what is he going to do? It is this and other difficult circumstances in David’s life that produced Psalm 61, a prayer in overwhelming times.
Psalm 61:1-4 (Living Bible) states: “O God, listen to me! Hear my prayer! For wherever I am, though far away at the ends of the earth, I will cry to you for help. When my heart is faint and overwhelmed, lead me to the mighty, towering Rock of safety. For you are my refuge, a high tower where my enemies can never reach me. I shall live forever in your tabernacle; oh, to be safe beneath the shelter of your wings!”
In these difficult economic times, in these unstable political times, in this era where strong cultural and spiritual winds want to blow us off our feet, lets not stop praying. Instead like David, when our hearts faint and are overwhelmed by all that is happening around us, lets draw closer to God, the towering Rock of safety, a refuge and a high tower, to be safe beneath the shelter of his wings!
Lord, in dark and difficult times, shine brighter on our path, Amen!