Tomorrow is Ash Wednesday. Today is Fat Tuesday. So, this is supposed to be the day that we celebrate and make merry because the next 40 days we are to be serious and morose. Fat Tuesday is Fat because we are to enjoy the Fat of the land. We are to take advantage of all that we have which we can enjoy. Basically, it is a hedonistic festival. When I read Psalm 59 I smile as I think of what David would have thought of Fat Tuesday. Oh, don’t get me wrong, he knew how to have a good time. But the relationship that we have with our God never changes. So what makes us think that today we are to make merry and tomorrow we are to wear sackloth and ashes because that is what God wants. No, it really isn’t, but maybe, just maybe it helps us to distinguish between the times and the seasons.
David’s primary concern, and probably his only concern in these psalms that begin with DO NOT DESTROY, is the preservation of his life. So maybe I was wrong and it did mean: please don’t destroy ME. In each of these psalms the context is King Saul looking to destroy him. In each of these Psalms David is asking for God’s protection as the one that God has anointed is seeking his life. And somehow in each of these psalms we end with a verse very similar to what we find here in vs.17: O my strength, I will sing praises to you, for you, O God, are my fortress, the God who shows me steadfast love.
Dick Barge is lying in a hospital bed tonight. Not real sure the full extent of what is going on. But this is what I pray for him this evening, that he is able to hear vs.17 even while he might be going through what David expresses in the verses before this. Maybe we need to pray that God would deliver us from our enemies and our enemies happen to be medical conditions that seem to nag but don’t have a clear diagnosis. Look at vs.14, does someone else hear this in their lives? “Each evening they come back, howling like dogs and prowling about the borough.” But we can always come back with verses 16-17. Sleep well my family knowing that God is our fortress and always has been through all the times in our lives.