Psalms 116:1-8 (ESV)
I love the Lord, because he has heard
my voice and my pleas for mercy.
2 Because he inclined his ear to me,
therefore I will call on him as long as I live.
3 The snares of death encompassed me;
the pangs of Sheol laid hold on me;
I suffered distress and anguish.
4 Then I called on the name of the Lord:
“O Lord, I pray, deliver my soul!”
5 Gracious is the Lord, and righteous;
our God is merciful.
6 The Lord preserves the simple;
when I was brought low, he saved me.
7 Return, O my soul, to your rest;
for the Lord has dealt bountifully with you.
8 For you have delivered my soul from death,
my eyes from tears,
my feet from stumbling;
This Psalm is one of the Psalms that Jesus and His 12 disciples sang during the Passover meal. It was sung following the eating of the Passover lamb. The author of this Psalm (possibly David) describes his deliverance from a near death experience. As a result of God’s rescue he breaks forth with the phrase “I love the LORD”. He is expressing his thanksgiving for God’s response to his call. He paints a picture of God’s gracious character and righteous purposes. He shuns self-reliance and invites total trust in God.
We don’t typically face near death experiences in our daily lives, but we do face daily trials and tribulations, stumbling blocks, road blocks, and hurdles. We should give thanks to God every day for helping us overcome these obstacles in our lives, for keeping us safe from harm when that person cuts us off in traffic, or that person on the phone runs a light that was obviously red but they just weren’t paying attention. Because God listens to us, we should call on him in every aspect of our daily lives, when that one co-worker gets on your nerves, or the boss is being a real jerk for some reason. We should keep this Psalm in mind and know that God listens to us, cares for us, loves us, wants us to be happy people, and will give us the strength to get through whatever trial or tribulation is troubling us.
Later in this Psalm we hear the author say that the Lord preserves (protects) the simple, and when he was brought low, god saved him. God saves us every day of our lives. Each day that we are given is a gift from God. A gift that we don’t deserve, that we are not really worthy of receiving, a gift that God bestows on us out of his love for us and his abundant graciousness. Enjoy each day, thank the Lord for what we receive and what he has given us, don’t moan and complain about what we don’t have and what we think we are missing in our lives.
In verse 8 the author says that God has delivered his soul from death, his eyes from tears, and his feet from stumbling. God will lift us up and carry us through the trials and tribulations of our daily lives if we ask him for help and guidance. He supports us and keeps us from stumbling, he picks us up and dusts us off when we do fall, he heals our wounds, scrapes and bruises, he puts a Band-Aid on the wounds that are bleeding, dries the tears from our eyes and send us on our way to serve him again. We can not fail in the eyes of the Lord unless we refuse to accept him and his love for us. So the next time you fall or stumble, remember that God loves you, God protects you, God keeps you wrapped in his arms for comfort and safety. He will not fail you, and all he asks of you is your love.