When my spirit grows faint within me, it is you who watch over my way. Psalm 142:3
Perhaps I shouldn’t have agreed to join Brian on a run. I was in a foreign country, and I had no idea where or how far we would go or what the terrain would be like. Plus, he was a fast runner. Would I twist an ankle trying to keep up with him? What could I do but trust Brian because he knew the way? As we started, I got even more worried. The trail was rough, winding through a thick forest on uneven ground. Thankfully, Brian kept turning around to check on me and warn me of rough patches ahead.
Perhaps this was how some of the people in Bible times felt while entering unfamiliar territory—Abraham in Canaan, the Israelites in the wilderness, and Jesus’ disciples on their mission to share the good news. They had no clue what the journey would be like, except that it would surely be tough. But they had Someone leading them who knew the way ahead. They had to trust that God would give them strength to cope and that He would take care of them. They could follow Him because He knew exactly what lay ahead.
This assurance comforted David when he was on the run. Despite great uncertainty, he said to God: “When my spirit grows faint within me, it is you who watch over my way” (Psalm 142:3). There will be times in life when we fear what lies ahead. But we know this: our God, who walks with us, knows the way.
What worries you most in life? How can you remind yourself that God is walking with you and knows the way ahead?
Father, even though I don’t know what may happen next, You do. I know You’ll take care of me and guide my steps.
Fourteen psalms have historical titles that tie them to specific events in David’s life (Psalms 3, 7, 18, 30, 34, 51, 52, 54, 56, 57, 59, 60, 63, 142). The title of Psalm 142 tells us that David wrote this maskil or contemplation “when he was in the cave.” Psalm 57 has a similar superscription: “When he had fled from Saul into the cave.” David hid in the caves escaping from the murderous king on two occasions (1 Samuel 22:1; 24:1–7). Pushed into a corner, the despondent David lamented that “no one is concerned for me” (Psalm 142:4). But he turned his troubles over to God: “I cry out to the Lord; I plead for the Lord’s mercy. I pour out my complaints before him and tell him all my troubles” (vv. 1–2 nlt). David didn’t merely take refuge in a cave; he made God his “refuge” (v. 5).