God’s Shield Surrounds Me
You are a shield around me. (Psalm 3:3. Read Psalm 3 in its entirety.)
Once again, the Psalm mirrors our current situation. Once again, the Psalmist feels at risk. Foes surround him – and likely the nation. He wonders if he can hold out for the long haul. Yet, he discovers peace in God’s presence.
God is a shield. God will protect David and God will protect us. This enables us to go from fear and passivity to courage and action. With God’s shield around us, we can do what is necessary to tip the scales of our lives, our communities, and the world from death to life. With God as our shield, we can feel fear but not be afraid; we can feel impatience but be patient; we can recognize danger but go forth in faith.
There is no denial in the Psalms. Threat exists and God can’t immunize you from it, even in your church’s sanctuary or the Jerusalem Temple. Denial is the way of destruction whether in dealing with the pandemic or our health condition. Disinformation regarding statistics and medical counsel is deadly for persons and nations. Healthy embrace of the totality of our feelings, and the threats we face, brings us personal and spiritual wellbeing.
Today, remember God’s shield is love. God’s shield is courage. God’s shield is compassion. Let us dwell in God’s protection and reach out in love.
Holy One, your shield over us is love. Let us dwell in your peace, trusting your care to give us strength to face the challenges of every day. Amen.
Bruce Epperly is a Cape Cod pastor, professor, and author of over 50 books, including FAITH IN A TIME OF PANDEMIC, GOD ONLINE: A MYSTIC’S GUIDE TO THE INTERNET, and ONE WORLD: THE LORD’S PRAYER IN A PROCESS PERSPECTIVE.