Psalms 106 and 107 are particularly hard to read as the psalmist confesses Israel’s sins, hard to read not only because we come face to face with Israel’s failures but also our own. In fact, they would be devastating to read if not for the appeal to God’s mercies: “Many times he delivered them (Israel), but they were rebellious in their purposes . . . For their sake he remembered his covenant, and relented according to the abundance of his steadfast love” (106:43,45) . . . “they had rebelled against the words of God, and spurned the counsel of the Most High . . . Then they cried to the Lord in their trouble, and he delivered them from their distress” (107:11,13). My, how merciful God is to his people!
Then, there is David! “My heart is steadfast, O God!” (108:1) Now, that’s a testimony. To be able to say that my heart is steadfast, that I am running the race through pain but still running, that I am persevering, that I am reaching out for the prize before me, that I am looking neither to the left or the right, that my focus is laser-like, that I’m just keepin’ on keepin’ on. Oh, always to be able to say that! Ultimately, however, the Psalmist focuses on God. The reason we can persevere is that God’s love is steadfast, it is great above the heavens, and his faithfulness reaches to the clouds (108:4).
My heart is fixed, O God,
A grateful song I raise;
Awake, O harp, in joyful strains,
Awake, my soul, to praise.
The help of man is vain,
Be Thou our helper, Lord;
Through Thee we shall do valiantly
If Thou Thy aid afford. –Anonymous (1912)