God's Got Your Back

Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him.
Psalm 34:8 (NIV)

One of my twin boys is a picky eater. I used to blame myself for this. Now I realize because both twin boys have been brought up in the same way, they are just different. One is more adventurous with food than the other. I often encourage my son who turns up his nose at something he hasn’t eaten before. “Just try it,” I urge,“you might enjoy it.”

Boldly Surrender

In Psalm 34, David says putting our trust in God is like trying new food.“Find out for yourself,” he says,“you will discover God is good.” David spoke from experience.

In Hot Water

David should have been living the life of a hero.

He fearlessly killed the Philistine giant, Goliath, who terrified the army of Israel. Elevated to army commander, he won many more battles against the Philistines.

David’s conquests made him popular among the people of Israel. With celebrity status, he inspired a hit song: “Saul has slain his thousands, and David his tens of thousands.” However, David’s fame only made King Saul livid, and intensely jealous. Saul wanted David dead.

So, David was on the run.

He needed physical sustenance, protection, and priestly help. David went to Ahimelek the priest with a fabricated story about being on the king’s business so he could get food and a weapon. He left with consecrated bread from the temple, and the only weapon available—Goliath’s sword.

Danger lurked in every hideout, and each person’s face in Israel.

In desperation David fled across the border into the enemy territory of Philistia—a strip of land between the coast and Israel, near present day Gaza—where Saul could not hunt him down.

With Goliath’s sword on his waist, David headed for the nearest city, Gath, home of Goliath and Achish, the King of Gath. He would be safe from Saul and receive protection from Achish, so he thought.

However, David discovered his reputation went before him. The servants of Achish instantly recognized David. Even knowledge of the song had reached their royal court. Achish’s attendants could not believe their luck. David, the highly respected warrior, was alone in their midst with only Goliath’s sword to protect him. A sword proven worthless to the giant.

David realized he now faced another life-threatening situation. He was afraid. No matter how carefully he had planned, things were not going as hoped.

When To Trust God

Scripture says David heard the words spoken about him and he took them to heart. Something stirred deep inside him. “Be merciful to me oh God, for I am under attack,” David wrote in Psalm 56 when the Philistines in Gath surrounded him. “When I am afraid, I will trust in you.”

David recognized he needed to fully trust in his Lord for his safekeeping.

Sometimes we, too, prioritize taking care of our physical needs and asking other people for protection when we should rely on God for help.

With nowhere to run, David had to think quickly.

David pretended to be insane. He dribbled on his long beard, the symbol and pride of manhood. No doubt the men of Achish stepped away at this sight. In the ancient Far East, madness was a sign of being possessed by a god. People did not want to associate with a madman. He would be allowed to live, but excluded from society.

Sure enough, King Achish shunned his greatest foe. He threw David out of his court. Faking madness saved David’s life.

Tasting Goodness

Yet, David gave credit for his escape to God. He acknowledged God got him out of the mess, not his quick thinking.

God kept David safe even though David relied on some holy bread, a fallen giant’s sword, and an enemy king.

David wrote the words of Psalm 34:8 while pretending to be insane: “Blessed is the man who takes refuge in God.”

And so, for us:

  • Even when we try to figure out things on our own, God still protects us.
  • Even if trusting God in a difficult situation looks ridiculous, God is our best defense. David knew comical-looking trust allowed a young shepherd boy with a sling to kill a giant soldier in full body armor.
  • Even if we think a situation will not turn out well, God will keep us safe.

Out at a restaurant with my son for Mother’s Day, I ordered a bowl of mussels. “Would you like to try one?” I asked. He put one on his fork. “Don’t look too closely,” I suggested, “just eat it.” He smiled. “It’s better than I expected,” he said.

Don’t miss out on tasting God’s goodness, it’s better than you expect.

COMPEL Enhancement/Tip: I used Lysa Terkeurst’s teaching on spiritual depth in Three S’s of Connectivity Part 2.

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  • Thank you Rachel for reminding us all of one of the basic riches of our faith.
    It takes moving forward toward God to see He has been there all the time waiting to show us Hs provision, power and love. In this season of change for me as Anna leaves our home for new horizons, I need so much to remember His awesome provision of good and unexpected things even through difficult seasons in the life of our family. God is my Sustainer, Surpriser and Saviour in the days to come. He forgives our weak moments of fear and unfaithfulness to Him only to show us more of His grace and love as we seek His face. 1 Tim. 1:7 is in my pocket these days. For my God is not a God of fear, but of Power (HolySpirit), Love (Jesus saving me) and a Sound Mind (God the Father solid and secure Creater of all).
    Thank you for your openess to the Spirit as you continue to encourage women to live strong and full of grace, love and truth for the Kingdom.
    Blessings on you and your ministry,

    • Donna, thank you for your beautiful words. Your faith and trust in God our Sustainer, Surpriser and Saviour is remarkable and encouraging to me and to others. May you know God’s richest blessings during the days and weeks ahead.

  • Your post made me smile. I had a similar moment where my son tried a bowl of coconut curry mussels for the first time. Thank you for sharing this and for a great reminder of a delightful moment in my own life.

  • Rachel, love these words: “It’s better than I expected,” he said. Don’t miss out on tasting God’s goodness.” Thanks for encouraging me today and for linking up with Compel!

  • Now I need some grapes. 🙂 (Those look yummy.)

    “Even when we try to figure things out on our own, God still protects us.” ~ Good thought. 🙂 He’s the best…understanding our humanness and all. 🙂

    Thanks for sharing. 🙂
    ~ Brenda Ottinger

  • We crave depth and insight. I want to leave having learned something. Great job on applying this tip. Cheering today from the Compel Linkup. Come visit me on Purposeful Faith sometime and join in the #RaRalinkup on Tuesday’s too!

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