Surrounded, but Singing!

 from Lynda Lindsey

You are my King, and my God, who decrees victories for Jacob. Through You we push back our enemies; through Your name we trample our foes. I do not trust in my bow, my sword does not bring me victory; but You give us victory over our enemies, You put our adversaries to shame. In God we make our boast all day long, and we will praise Your name forever. Psalm 44:4-8

Our hearts had not turned back; our feet had not strayed from Your path. Psalm 44:18

Paul and Silas, after rebuking an evil spirit in a slave girl, had been stripped, beaten, flogged, and imprisoned in an inner cell, their feet in stocks: About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening to them. Acts 16:25

God sometimes answers our prayers immediately; but not always. In Psalm 44 the Psalmist, battle-worn, defeated and weary, cries out for God’s help and deliverance. The writer reviews God’s past actions in Israel’s history and reaffirms, as always, that ultimate victory comes at the Lord’s hand. The hard choice when surrounded, defeated, battle-scarred and weary, is to choose to sing God’s praises.

Defeat, in this case, hadn’t come because of unfaithfulness or disobedience to God. Nor were Paul and Silas in prison because of any sin on their part. On the contrary, Paul and Silas were on their way to a prayer meeting when they kindly set a slave girl free; their repayment was a harsh jail sentence. God, the heart-knower, sees into our hearts, understands our motives, and controls our circumstances.

Trials. Battles. Defeats. Facing death. Dire circumstances leave us feeling anxious. It seems that God is asleep; that He is hiding from us. That He doesn’t see our misery and oppression. But our God does not sleep or slumber; He never grows weary. Our God sees, hears, knows. God sees our circumstances and hears our prayers. The answer just doesn’t always come as immediately as we would like. But it comes. Our responsibility when surrounded by the enemy? Sing! You never know who may be listening and learning from our faithfulness.