While reading Psalms this morning, this verse caught my eye:
Some trust in chariots and
some in horses,
but we trust in the name
of the Lord our God. (Psalm 20:7)
This psalm is written for those experiencing a time of great trouble, a time of stress and fear. (The first line is “May the Lord answer you in the day of trouble!”) So I think that the chariots and horses are ways of defending the people, ways of keeping them safe in the time of attack.
The psalmist isn’t saying not to use chariots or horses, but rather that one’s ultimate trust, the One to actually worship and stake your whole life upon is God.
I wonder, if the psalmist wrote this for us today, living in our own culture and time, what would he or she write? There are many possible answers, but here’s one… a bit of a stinging challenge to us all (Lent is a challenging time, isn’t it?!):
Some trust in private investment,
others in government programs,
but we trust in
the love and mercy of God.
That’s not to say we don’t need private investment or government programs. It’s that these things are not as important as placing all our faith in God.
Trusting in God doesn’t mean everything will “go my way”… That might be what some think, especially those who subscribe to the “gospel of prosperity,” but the God I believe in is much more mysterious and beyond my comprehension. God is not at my beck and call, like a servant waiting to answer my petty little whims.
For me, trusting in God means staking my whole life on the message of love and mercy that Christ taught. It means being willing to go the extra mile or take the risk to try something new for the sake of others.
Trust means believing that, in the end, it doesn’t matter if I have wrinkles or the Vikings win or which political party has the majority in Congress. Trusting in God means believing that there is something more important and more valuable than any of these things–and that the love we practice here prepares us for the loving embrace of God in the next life.
And, yes, at times, we do this very poorly–but that’s no reflection on the truth of Christ’s message. The fact that we fail to follow through on parts of the gospel is one good reason for the season of Lent: to recognize our sins, faults, weaknesses, and ways we “miss the mark” in our relationship with God and others.
Trust means believing that despite these sins and failings of mine, Christ has overcome sin and evil–and that Christ will continue to overcome sin and evil both now and in the future.
Now it’s your turn:
How would you rewrite the psalm verse for today?
What is the Spirit of God leading you to think about today?
Feel free to share your answer in the comment section if you like.
May the good Lord bless you. . . Until next time, Amen!