Psalm 32 is a great song about forgiveness – about wasting away in one’s guilt (vs. 3-4), confessing iniquity, (v.5) and receiving forgiveness (vs. 1, 5b).
But the part that comforted me the most today was verse 7:
You are a hiding place for me;
you preserve me from trouble;
you surround me with shouts of deliverance.
Of course, I sang these lyrics as part of praise song (from the 80s?). Check it out here.
So, when I read it, the tune came back to me. But I really love the words and the truths.
That God is a hiding place, a place to turn away from whatever is buffeting me, a place of comfort, a place of peace.
And the next phrase merits some meditation. It’s sort of hard to imagine God surrounding me when my enemies close in – shouting that He’s here to deliver me.
Sometimes God seems sort of passive, like He’s waiting for me to come to him and find shelter, seek Him for help.
But here He is coming to me, surrounding me, shouting “I’m here. I’m here to protect you. I’m here to save you, to deliver you.”
And I guess that’s why the Psalmist can be forgiven – not because he ran to God, but because God came to him in the person of Jesus and delivered him.
I still sometimes have a hard time thinking of Jesus coming to me and taking care of me and delivering me – but I know he did it once when he came and died on the cross for me.
Dear Lord: Help me to imagine you coming to me when I need it, when I need comfort, when I need help, when I need a friend, when I need the sense of your presence, when I need to know you’re listening, when I need to know you love me. Help me keep the thought in mind of you surrounding me with shouts of deliverance. Help that image become more real to me. Amen