“Then they cried out to the LORD in their trouble, and He brought them out of their distress. He stilled the storm to a whisper; the waves of the sea were hushed.” Psalm 107:28-29 (NIV)
I have often stated the fact that the Book of Psalms is a great place to camp out. There is so much wisdom and knowledge shared in each Psalm that after a short visit there, you will come away with a vision of the Lord that has been changed, added to, and/or enhanced. When you read Psalm 107 you will come away with the knowledge that God shows His love in many ways, one of which is the promise of His protection.
Psalm 107 is thought to have been written after Judah had been enslaved and taken to Babylon, and most likely after the people had been returned to the land of Palestine. It’s basic premise is to teach us, to show us, that when God’s people need His help, He will be there for them. While we cannot understand why God allows His people to suffer with trials and distress, as Christians we realize He always has a purpose. He does not simply hurt us. He uses our pain to help us to complete our journey of faith, and during it we will grow and become more like Him. He molds us into the likeness of Christ with each new trial we experience.
Consider the verse above. This verse brings remembrance of the experience of the disciples when they saw Jesus sleeping peacefully on the boat, while the wind and the sea were raging. (Matt. 8:23-27) They were fearful for their lives, and could not understand why He slept. Yet upon awakening, He merely spoke a few words and the tempest of the storm abated. Yet long before Jesus was sent to earth, God was already doing the same for the Israelites.
Psalm 107 is divided into sections, and each has a purpose. It begins with an introduction, a message to give thanks to the LORD because of His goodness. Then we go on to see four scenarios of different kinds of distress His people have experienced.
1) Some were homeless in the desert wastelands (vs. 4-6)
2) Some sat in darkness, as prisoners in iron chains (vs. 10-13)
3) Some were foolish, and suffered afflictions (vs. 17-20)
4) Some went on the seas, and were in storms (vs. 23-29)
Are we not like many of these? We, too, suffer in ways that have been caused by our own actions. Yes, we know the enemy is truly the cause, but it is how we choose to respond to him that brings our real calamity.
You will find, at the end the verse sections I have provided above, that the psalmist goes on to describe the people’s reactions to God’s deliverance in each of their circumstances. They are glad, they plan celebrations, they saw and understood His love for them and the protection He had provided.
“Whoever is wise, let him heed these things and consider the great love of the LORD.” Psalm 107:43
The psalmist gives us a warning of sorts. We are to make sure we see and understand just what the LORD has done. And through these things, we must be wise enough to see that He never means harm to us, but loves us. He loves us enough to do great and mighty things to save us from our distresses, which brings glory to His name, but His love is much more than that. His love is hope.
Jesus is Our Hope. He is the Son of God, and He brings the same protection through His love. It is His promise. It is His grace and love. It is Our Hope.
How have you seen God’s protection at work in your life? Please share in a comment here, or go to www.mystoryofgrace.com and give your testimony, that we may celebrate with you!