Completely Surrounded

Jon Burgess


“Though I am surrounded by troubles, you will protect me from the anger of my enemies. You reach out your hand, and the power of your right hand saves me.” ‭‭Psalms‬ ‭138:7‬ ‭


This was not hyperbole or poetic license. King David was quite literally surrounded by his enemies. Scholars aren't completely sure which incident David is referring to which adds to the power of this declaration all the more. Many and multiple times David, in service the Lord mind you, found himself surrounded by those who wanted to kill him. Yet, victory not violence defined him. Faith, not fear propelled him. Was he just living in denial? Quite the opposite. He was living in the declaration of His God in the midst of dire circumstances. The key to unlocking this confidence in the midst of a crisis? Prayer. He says as much in vs 3: “As soon as I pray, you answer me; you encourage me by giving me strength.” Look at that! David recognizes the immediacy of God's answer to the immediacy of his ask. Does that mean it gets solved right away? His life story, on the run for 7 years shows us that's not the case. So, how can David know that something's happening? Because Gods "promises are backed by all the honor of your name." (Vs 2). David moved from panic to prayer at a breakneck pace because the promises of God cannot be broken.


Do I pray with that kind of confidence and immediacy when all Hell is breaking loose around me? When I'm feeling claustrophobic from the demands do I call on His name or do cave to the pressure? Yesterday was one of those days we hope we never have to remember and yet we always will. I told my boys as we talked about it together that their kids might be reading about this day in their history books. The worst mass shooting in modern US history in Las Vegas resulting in 59 dead and 527 wounded. When I called up Pastor Kent Miyoshi of New Hope Las Vegas to find out how he and the church were doing his response was much like King David's. He spoke of mobilized, coordinated and unified prayer efforts on the Las Vegas strip and by the Convention center. They want to set up prayer and counseling tents so that all who are surrounded by death and loss will know they are surrounded by the love of Christ. This is how people of faith respond. While everyone else is running away we run into because we run in the strength of the unshakable promise of God's immovable presence. Whether it's a courtroom, a hospital room, a bedroom, or a funeral hall we walk in with the strength of Christ. When everyone's panicking we should be praying. When we are praying God is setting things into motion.


I'm reminded of how Elisha's Servant saw the armies of their enemies completely surrounding them. He panicked but Elisha prayed. He prayed that the eyes of his servant would be opened to see that "those who are with us are more than those who are with them." (2 Kings 6:16). Open my eyes, Lord. I see so much need in Puerto Rico after the hurricane, so much hurt and pain in Las Vegas after the shooting, so much loss for my friends whose husband just died. Open my eyes to see how You are with me, with them, with us. Help us to see that we are completely surrounded- surrounded by the armies of the living God. Your promises are true so I put my trust in You.

Devotions for October 03

Ezra 5,6
Psalm 138
Luke 16

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