For you before your Christmas services begin
But thou, O Lord, art a shield for me; my glory, and the lifter up of mine head. -Psalm 3:3
I am familiar with this verse and have sung it in church and at camp growing up. I have always thought when it says that God is the "lifter of my head" that it was saying God is the lifter if my mood, or that he lifts me out of discouragement. He certainly does that, but recently I found that King David was probably saying something different.
David wrote this song when his son Absalom, along with a good percentage of his own army, had turned against him and were chasing him into the wilderness. People were saying that he was not strong enough to defeat this attack. Rather than internalize those comments, he wrote a worship song that told a different story.
The word translated into "head" in verse 3 of this song, is a word that means "height". It's a word Hebrews used to describe the top of a mountain. They also used this word to describe a man's head because it is the highest point of his body and the point by which we all measure our own heights.
So when David said that God is the "lifter of his head", he meant He was the extension of his height. In other words, God makes us taller than we are when we face unsurmountable obstacles. God is better than our best. In fact, where our best abilities and our highest scores stop, that's where God begins and takes over to make us whatever we need to be to face our challenge.
As you begin leading Christmas services today and this week, you may feel like you fall "short" of the task in front of you. You instinctively know that this is one of the biggest opportunities for your church to welcome guests and to tell the story of Jesus. Incredible opportunities follow to connect with people based on the impact of these services. Do not let it intimidate you. Let it invigorate you.
God is your shield around you, your glory and the extender of your height, the expander of your capabilities. He, in you, is enough.
- Read vs 3 again slowly. Out of the three things David says God is, which ido you appreciate most today as a spiritual leader?
- If you were "taller" than you are spiritually, how would you face today's challenges? What would your interactions look like if you were more than able to face the the obstacles ahead?
- Tell God how you feel about him and yourself as you sense your "height" increasing spiritually.