49 Remember your word to your servant, in which you have made me hope.
50 This is my comfort in my affliction, that your promise gives me life.
51 The insolent utterly deride me, but I do not turn away from your law.
52 When I think of your rules from of old, I take comfort, O LORD.
53 Hot indignation seizes me because of the wicked, who forsake your law.
54 Your statutes have been my songs in the house of my sojourning.
55 I remember your name in the night, O LORD, and keep your law.
56 This blessing has fallen to me, that I have kept your precepts.
The Psalmist, David is pointing out here that he is putting his hope in the Word of God. When he says “remember your word to your servant” it’s not that he thinks God will forget his words but that he is placing his faith in the word of God. He has found hope in the scriptures. He is in essence praying scripture back to God. This is his way of stating the promises that he has found in scripture back to God. He finds comfort in the promises of God that speak to what is going on in his life at the time. That is one reason that studying scripture is so important. I have prayed many things, and gotten a no from God, that did not line up with scripture. But the things that I pray that line up with scripture, with a promise from God, they always come to pass in time. I think David is able to make this request of God too, because he has a history with God already. He is comforted in his affliction because he has already seen God act in accordance with scripture and His promises.
David also apparently wrote this at a time when he had people coming against him. I love studying the life of David because he had good times, and he had bad times. He had times when he was walking with God, hand in hand it seems and he had times where he walked away and wasn’t following God, and he sinned. But he always returned to God. When you study this man, David, the one who is called a man after God’s own heart, you realize how very “real” he was. He didn’t do everything right, in fact there was quite a lot that he got wrong yet he knew where to come home to. In this passage he points out that there are people who have come against him yet he knows where to place his hope and where to find his strength and confidence. He is placing his hope in the promises of God from scripture and I think, maybe from his own journey that he has walked with God and found Him faithful. The longer you walk with God your faith journey is written and your confidence and your faith is strengthened.
These last 3 verses of this passage spoke volumes to me. I love verse 54.
“Your statutes have been my songs in the house of my sojourning.”
Often times I have thought of sojourning as wandering maybe even aimlessly. But when I look up the word sojourn it simply means to stay as a temporary resident. Well, we are sojourning through this world aren’t we? We are temporary residents on planet earth. So our sojourning could simply mean our day to day. I loved this verse because of the many times I have used worship music to keep me grounded in life. In some really hard times and in some good times. Life is just plain hard sometime and I find that when it gets particularly hard for me, that if I turn on worship music in my background of my day that it gives me strength and confidence to make it through. It keeps my mind focused on God rather than on my struggles that are before me.
I also love how David mentions he is remembering God’s name in the night. I think David was waking up in the middle of the night and praying over his struggles. I have certainly been there too. I have mentioned before I have dealt with a little anxiety over the last few years and it always seems to hit me hardest in the middle of the night and I have trouble sleeping. But I find that if I go to my Bible or if I listen to worship music then the anxiety seems to subside and I am able to go back to sleep.
And then David recognizes that he has been blessed by keeping God’s precepts. I wonder if David is realizing the blessing that he has received from having a closer relationship with God because of the focus he has placed on God through his hard times. I know for me that is true. I have had a few tough years, and really I think we can all say that about the last two can’t we? But one thing I have come to realize is that even though I would not want to re-live some of the things that have happened the last few years, my relationship with my God is on a different plane than ever before. And because of that I am blessed.