He drew me out of deep waters. Psalm 18:16
A record rainfall more than tripled what was forecasted in Waverly, Tennessee, in August 2021. In the wake of the powerful storm, twenty people lost their lives and hundreds of homes were destroyed. Had it not been for the compassion and skill of helicopter pilot Joel Boyers, the loss of human life would’ve been even greater.
The pilot took flight in response to a phone call from a woman who was concerned about her loved ones. In addition to seeing houses on fire and cars in trees, Boyers noted, “It was nothing but [muddy], raging water below me.” The pilot, however, bravely proceeded to rescue twelve people from the roofs of their homes.
More often than not in life, the swirling floods we face aren’t literal—but oh, how real! In days of uncertainty and instability, we can feel overwhelmed, unsafe—“in over our heads” mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. But we don’t need to despair.
In Psalm 18, we read how David’s enemies were many and mighty, but his God was greater. How great? So great and powerful (v. 1) that he used multiple metaphors (v. 2) to describe Him. God was mighty enough to rescue from deep waters and strong enemies (vv. 16–17). How great? Great enough for us to call upon Him in the name of Jesus, regardless of the volume and depth of the “waters” surrounding us in life (v. 3).
What deep waters are you facing that compel you to call upon God? What keeps you from calling on Him?
Strong, saving, rescuing God, in the midst of my distress, when life’s waters are raging, grant me the faith to see You and cleave to You in every storm.
For further study, read Clinging to Hope in the Storm.
We know the occasion of the writing of Psalm 18 because its superscription reads: “Of David . . . when the Lord delivered him from the hand of all his enemies and from the hand of Saul.” C.H. Spurgeon sees this psalm as David looking back on his life (likely because Psalm 18 and the song in 2 Samuel 22 are virtually identical). However, the song also looks forward in that it points to the coming Messiah. We see this in verse 2, as David refers to God as “my rock, my fortress, and my deliverer.” Several New Testament passages point out that this rock is Christ (Romans 9:33; 1 Peter 2:6–8). And in Psalm 18:49, David says, “I will praise you, Lord, among the nations,” foreshadowing the time when Jesus would build His church from not only Israel but all nations (Ephesians 3:4–6).