But I have trusted in your steadfast love; my heart shall rejoice in your salvation. I will sing to the LORD, because he has dealt bountifully with me. (Psalm 13:5-6 ESV)
I turned on the news this morning and saw people caught up in horrible events. A missing thirteen year old was found in a neighbor’s basement but three of her family members are still missing. 42 people were killed in a Shanghai high–rise building fire. But nothing causes me to question the existence of God more than when I myself am the victim of injustice. We’ve all heard people ask, “If God is all powerful, why did he let this happen?”
In his early years, trouble stuck to David like he was made of Velcro. His friends sold him out. His enemies hunted him bent on killing him. His only friends were thugs and society’s rejects. He felt abandoned by God and even cried out, “How long will you hide your face from me?” (Psalm 13:1)
God deliberately hiding was not consistent with David’s knowledge of God. David witnessed God change things in and through him. Rather than David the shepherd avoiding a lion, God used David to kill it to protect sheep. Rather than sit on the sidelines while a foul giant taunted God’s people, God used David to take Goliath down. Without these troubles, David would never grow into the king and declare God’s salvation to Israel. David may never have become a man after God’s own heart.
It’s not until an athlete is fully exhausted and has completely endured that he really knows how good victory feels. When we are spent by circumstances it does mean we are abandoned by God. We only change when we are fully depleted. This is where salvation becomes real and personal and visible to others. It is then that singing a song about God’s goodness finds its deepest meaning.