Pages Navigation Menu

Psalm 91:4 Faithful to cover

Posted by on Sep 9, 2020 in Prayer Perspective, Psalm 91 | Comments Off on Psalm 91:4 Faithful to cover

He shall cover you with His feathers,
And under His wings you shall take refuge;
His faithfulness shall be your shield and buckler.

When you picture feathers or wings, do you typically think of military shields? That’s not my customary train of thought, but this unusual pairing reveals how intensely protective God feels about you. His heart brims with the desire to cover you when danger lurks and to be your shield against incoming attacks.

He shall cover you with His feathers,
And under His wings you shall take refuge…

The Creator has always had a bird’s eye view of the animal kingdom, and He chose—out of all His creatures—to liken Himself to an eagle when revealing His protective nature toward His people.

In the Song of Moses, it says of God’s relationship to Jacob, “…He encircled him, He cared for him, He guarded him as the pupil of His eye. Like an eagle that stirs up its nest, that hovers over its young, He spread His wings and caught them, He carried them on His pinions” (Deuteronomy 32:10-11).

David also use this same imagery in five of his Psalms. In Psalm 57, you can hear his anguished devotion when he cries out, “Be gracious to me, O God, be gracious to me, for my soul takes refuge in You; and in the shadow of Your wings I will take refuge until destruction passes by (verse 1). I love this! In the hour of greatest desperation, you, like David, have the right to hunker down under the shadow of God’s wings until destruction passes you by.

Not only did God’s people the Jews have access to the powerful shelter of God’s wings, but the Moabite Ruth also found refuge under His protective wings as well. Boaz spoke highly of Ruth’s deep devotion to and care for her mother-in-law Naomi when he said, “May the Lord reward your work, and your wages be full from the Lord, the God of Israel, under whose wings you have come to seek refuge” (Ruth 2:12).

David, Moses, and Ruth each found refuge under the majestic wings of the Lord. The Almighty God is still ready and willing to cover anyone who seeks His help; He will never tire of protecting you.

…His faithfulness shall be your shield and buckler.

When I come to this section in prayer, I am reminded of another shield—the mighty shield of faith with which you will be able to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one (Ephesians 6:16). But how many times—instead of believing your faith could quench every incoming missile—you’ve felt absolutely worthless? The enemy works overtime to make you feel like a complete faith-failure.

I felt like that more times than I could count…until this verse came alive to me. You see, God’s faithfulness itself is your shield! You don’t have to have monster faith; your God has enough faithfulness for the two of you! Just put your faith into His faithfulness, and when you feel weak, your trust is no longer in your own ability to be some kind of faith giant; your trust is in God!

And when it comes to God’s protective care over you? Place your trust fully in His faithfulness to do what it takes to keep you safe.

One night as a thirty-something woman, I had been passing out gospel tracts on the St. Louis Arch grounds with a group from my church. Because I was somewhat “seasoned” at this sort of thing, an inexperienced young couple were paired with me. Toward the end of the evening I was sharing Jesus with a young woman. The couple got bored and wandered off to find the rest of the group. I didn’t care because she was very interested in giving her life to Christ.

Soon, her eyes popped open as big as silver dollars, and she scrambled away. I turned and immediately was surrounded by a group of six to eight men. As they closed in around me, the oddest thing happened. I had a vision!

No longer was I standing near the top of the south stairway of the Arch; I was at a Charles Capps meeting at my church! There Brother Capps stood, preaching with his Arkansas twang, “My brother, sister, Jesus SAID ‘Let us GO to the other side of the lake’; and if Jesus SAID ‘Let us GO to the other side of the lake’, then no wave, no wind, no storm could stop Him!”

And with that, there I was, back at the Arch, surrounded by the same six to eight men. I looked across the way and saw the old Riverboat McDonald’s. I SAID to the men, “I am GOING to McDonald’s!”

I walked right through that circle; no one touched me. As I descended the long stairway, the Holy Spirit spoke clearly, “Walk. Don’t run. Hold your head high, and don’t look back.”

There were whistles and catcalls as I fearlessly walked across Leonor K. Sullivan Blvd. to the gangplank leading to McDonald’s. Down the gangplank I marched, opened the door to the Golden Arches and saw my whole team—including the young couple. In an instant it dawned on me what God had just shielded me from. My knees became Jello, and I wobbled to the counter to order a bag of fries and a Coke.

God’s faithfulness was my shield and buckler that night; and the good news is that He will always be the same, yesterday, today, and forever (Hebrews 13:8).

Put your faith in the faithfulness of the Lord and take refuge under His all-encompassing wings!

Dorothy

© 2020, Dorothy Frick

Read More

Psalm 91:3 Surely He will deliver you

Posted by on Sep 7, 2020 in Prayer Perspective, Psalm 91 | Comments Off on Psalm 91:3 Surely He will deliver you

Surely He shall deliver you from the snare of the fowler And from the deadly pestilence. Psalm 91:3

I love this verse. It is straightforward, crisp, and clear. God’s intention is for you to be delivered, pure and simple, from snares (danger) and disease.

Surely

Nothing is more settled in the Word of God than any statement preceded by the word SURELY. Whenever Jesus said, “Verily, verily…” in the gospels, He was saying “Absolutely. Certainly. Beyond a shadow of a doubt. Set in stone.” This word “surely” is the exact same thing. God is saying, “I’ve made up My mind about the issue.”

He shall deliver you from the snare of the fowler…

Your God is ready and willing to deliver you from danger. He sees the path you take and is prepared to deliver you from any and all harm along the way. Of course, this doesn’t mean you have liberty to violate the precepts of the Word or your conscience just because “God will cover it no matter what”. Remember verse one? These promises are for you who seek to put the Lord first place in your heart, life, and decisions. (Satan tried to get Jesus to take a flying leap from the top of the Temple quoting another verse from this Psalm—“Hey! God’s angels will catch You up in their hands if You jump! Just do it, and everyone will know You’re God!” Jesus told him, “BUG OFF! You don’t have the right to put the Lord your God to this kind of stupid test” (see Matthew 4:5-7; my paraphrase).

But trust me—God knows how human we are; and He cares for us nonetheless. Do you seek to put Him first? Then whether you’re perfect or not (and you’re not), He’s prepared to deliver—rescue, snatch you away, recover you, and pluck you out—from every conceivable trap, snare, or danger. He just wants you to look to Him first for help—and help will come.

I’ve experienced several occasions in which God came through for me in a big way. Car accidents were averted, turbulence on planes was brought to nothing, violent people meaning to harm me backed off for no apparent reason (one man threatening to “martyr” my friend and me literally fell over backwards when I quoted God’s Word), and I’ve even had God tell me one Monday not to mow my lawn on Thursday—no explanation, but when Wednesday came, I reluctantly mowed—and then mid-morning Thursday (my prime mowing time) I sat looking out the window and CRASH! Down came a large silver maple across the width of my back yard—right where I would have been mowing!

The Lord is not limited to delivering you from physical danger; He is also well aware of moral, emotional, social, and relational dangers. He may give you a subtle nudge to avoid a certain party, meeting, or date; as you yield to His leading, you are sparing yourself unnecessary trouble. Even when someone actively seeks to undermine your reputation, He is willing to deliver you. Trust Him; as you lean on Him in purposeful trust, He’ll show you what to do—and what not to do. Obey Him, and you will see yourself rescued from big fat headaches and heartaches.

And from the deadly pestilence.

As greatly as He cares for your safety, He also cares about your health. In fact, He made provision for this in Christ. It is written, “He Himself bore our sins in His body on the cross, so that we might die to sin and live to righteousness; for by His wounds you were healed” (1 Peter 2:24).

Don’t think the Lord isn’t aware of Covid-19 and everything that has to do with it—fact and fiction, danger and disinformation. It’s His stated purpose in this verse to SURELY deliver you…from the deadly pestilence. He’s given you the tools to use—common sense and good hygiene knowledge—and has graciously granted a plethora of insight into how to build your immune health just for the asking. Above all, though, dare to trust Him with your body. He knows how to protect it; and even if you do contract this or any other virus or disease, SURELY He is faithful to deliver you and to walk with you through it to the other side.

Honestly, with the world around us swirling in a chaotic cacophony of injustice, violence, despair, and disease, I can’t think of any better place to park my focus:

Surely He shall deliver you from the snare of the fowler And from the deadly pestilence.

Dorothy

© 2020, Dorothy Frick

Read More

Psalm 91:2 SAY it!

Posted by on Aug 29, 2020 in Prayer Perspective, Psalm 91 | Comments Off on Psalm 91:2 SAY it!

NOTE: All the promises of Psalm 91 are accessed as you dwell in the secret place of the Most High (verse 1)—through prioritizing your relationship with God. Does that mean you’ll never have trouble? Of course not. But you will walk through those troubles under the protective shadow of the Almighty. This Psalm is a faith-building promise pledge to you from God. Lean hard on it as you navigate the chaos of life while never ceasing to put Jesus first place.

I will say to the LORD, “My refuge and my fortress, My God, in whom I trust!” Psalm 91:2

SAY IT!

I WILL SAY to the Lord…Determine not to be shy with God; use your voice with Him. Three things happen when you speak out in this way:

  1. You demonstrate to God your willingness to align yourself with Him and His promises. He who comes to God must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him (Hebrews 11:6);  
  2. When you pray God’s Word aloud, you will hear your own voice praying the Word, and as a result, your faith will increase.  Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of Christ (Romans 10:17).
  3. As your faith increases so does your CONFIDENCE: Your boldness to speak OF the Lord to others will also increase.

God longs to hear you SAY to HIm: YOU are my refuge. YOU are my fortress. YOU are my God. In YOU I will trust.

Here’s how I might pray out the rest of this verse:

YOU are my Refuge

Lord God, YOU are my Refuge—my safety and my shelter from pursuit, danger, and trouble. You are my protection in times of danger or distress. As my Refuge, I can flee to You for safety and protection in times of violence or storm. As I take refuge in You, I am safe from the snare of the hunter and from siege, war, and upheaval.

YOU are my Fortress

Lord, YOU are my Fortress—YOU are my place of defense. YOU are a stronghold and garrison so fortified that enemies can not approach. In You I am safe; in You the evil one touches me not (1 John 5:18).

YOU are my GOD

Father, I will acknowledge no other God but YOU. YOU are my God. You are real; You are alive; and You are mindful of me. You are my God, and I am Your child.

In YOU I will trust

YOU are my God and in You alone I will trust. I trust You today with everything that comes my way; I will trust You tomorrow with everything I may face; I will trust You throughout the rest of my days, through high times and hard times. I choose to lean on You with my whole being, and I trust You to always be my refuge and fortress. I will trust You, Lord, because You are worthy to be trusted.

ANOTHER NOTE: One day as I was walking and praying this last section of verse two—You are my God in whom I trust—out of the blue it hit me: IN GOD WE TRUST. Our coins and paper currency proclaim Psalm 91:2!

No wonder there’s such a push to crush this powerful national motto. Clueless men blindly hate God; however, the enemy who drives them is terrified of what a unified return to trust in God in this nation would spark, and he is scrambling furiously to prevent that from arising.

And concerning the strategies of the enemy to destroy our trust in the Living God? I will SAY OF THE LORD MY GOD—YOU are my Refuge! YOU are my Fortress! YOU are my GOD [and the GOD of this nation]; AND IN GOD WE WILL TRUST.

SAYING it every day of my life,

Dorothy

© 2020, Dorothy Frick

Read More

Psalm 91:1 The secret place

Posted by on Aug 27, 2020 in Prayer Perspective, Psalm 91 | Comments Off on Psalm 91:1 The secret place

He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High
Shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.
Psalm 91:1

I’ll bet I’m not the only one who used to search out secret hiding places as a kid. There was a group of lilac bushes when I was growing up between my back yard and the adjoining one, and I would get up at the crack of dawn, while the Indian test pattern was the only thing on TV, fix a bowl of Sugar Smacks, Sugar Pops, Cocoa Puffs, or Alpha-Bits, and sneak out the back door to that lilac hiding place to take in the sights, sounds, and smells of the neighborhood waking up. In fact, I can still feel the same excitement in my stomach that I used to experience as I sneaked out the door.

I had a different hiding place on the edge of my street, between the developed and undeveloped parts when I was twelve or thirteen. I was so concerned about kids from distant reaches of the subdivision finding and taking over my “fort” that I dug a foot and a half deep hole and covered it with thin sticks and weeds so I could sabotage intruders.

Later, when I was a counselor at Ranger, a primitive camp program at Camp Lakewood during the 70’s, we would play Capture the Flag after dark in the rocky glens and fields surrounded by woods. Oh, how I loved finding the right spy post, jumping out at unsuspecting enemy campers or counselors to put them in Capture the Flag prison!

And as a freshman and sophomore in college, right before I gave my heart to Christ, I would return to my dorm after a night of drinking and partying and sit on the stairwell landing of the 7th floor of my dorm to talk to God about my night, hidden away from everyone but my Creator.

I shared all this to give context to my delight over having a secret place. Every time I read or pray this first verse in Psalm 91, He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High, I am brought back to one or another of my coveted secret places.

Think about your best hiding places as a kid or teen when you read this verse, because you now have an open invitation not only to visit, but to live in a very cool secret place—the secret place of the Most High! The Living God has invited YOU to move on in, baggage and all. The accoutrements are beyond your expectations, the very atmosphere is alive with wonder, and the longer you stay, the more in awe you will be. Right there, in His secret place, you can feel safe enough to start removing some of that heavy old baggage you brought in with you. You won’t need it there, anyway.

How do you find this hiding place? A long ago radio preacher I once heard explained it like this: Dwelling in the secret place of the Most High is simply this—prioritizing intimacy with God. Hey! I did that to an extent before I ever gave my heart to Jesus. I talked to Him about the parties I had just returned from, how everyone was acting, even how much fun it was. I know that doesn’t sound very “holy”, but I was making a point to acknowledge Him. The fact that you don’t yet know Jesus is no reason to avoid Him. He actually enjoys it…but like I discovered, if you hang around the creek bank long enough, you’ll eventually fall in. (No better Slip ‘n’ Slide anywhere!)

The hiding places of my youth were stationary, and when I sneaked in there, I stayed put in one spot. This secret place, however, is mobile. As you prioritize your relationship with the Lord, you are dwelling on Him in your mind and heart; and you are actually dwelling in Him as well. Wherever you go, He’s there with you.

The book of James tells us, “Draw near to God, and He will draw near to you,” (chapter 4, verse 8). This is an incredible arrangement, because the next statement in Psalm 91:1 paints a vivid picture of just this very occurrence. It says:

He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High
Shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.

If you take the initiative to prioritize your relationship and time with God, you are drawing near to Him. You are dwelling in the secret place of the Most High.

He, in turn—just as He did with me as a confused teen—will draw near to you. In fact, He will hover so closely that you will be under His direct shadow.

Have you ever seen a little fledgling bird just beginning to try out its wings? Mama bird is close, watchful, ready to intervene if necessary.  But you? YOU are under the direct shadow of the Almighty. That fledgling can flap and flop several feet away from Mama; but you who prioritize intimacy with God are within arm’s reach—arm’s reach of the Almighty. This is how miraculous interventions happen.

One more thought: Remember back in the early days of the apostles after Jesus returned to Heaven? Acts 5 tells the story:

At the hands of the apostles many signs and wonders were taking place among the people…And all the more believers in the Lord, multitudes of men and women, were constantly added to their number, to such an extent that they even carried the sick out into the streets and laid them on cots and pallets, so that when Peter came by at least his shadow might fall on any one of them,” (verses 12, 14-15)

These Jewish believers had witnessed the power of God moving through Peter; and I’ll bet they knew the 91st Psalm as well. They put two and two together, and probably figured that since God was moving through Peter, then Peter was under His shadow. Therefore, what better place for sick people to be than under the shadow of the man who was obviously under the shadow of the Almighty! And if you have any infirmity in your body, what better place for you to be than under the shadow of the Almighty?

As you prioritize your intimacy with God, moving about under His shadow, don’t be surprised if interesting things, new perspectives, special blessings, and remarkable “turnarounds” happen. Remember, however, this is not a magic spell or a genie in a bottle you’ve stumbled upon, but a lifelong relationship and adventure with the Almighty God Himself.

See you under His shadow!

Dorothy

© 2020, Dorothy Frick

Read More

Psalm 91: Security in God’s protection

Posted by on Aug 26, 2020 in Prayer Perspective, Psalm 91 | Comments Off on Psalm 91: Security in God’s protection

Are you feeling a little shaky right now with all the uncertainty of our culture pressing in on you from all sides? Covid-19 shut downs, positive tests, quarantines, isolation, masks, racial disparities and the ensuing unrest and violence, anger on social media, crazy weather and horrific fires, clashing political conventions, passions, and fears, tensions at home, at work, among friends…even while shopping, gassing up the car, or hanging at the park?

I have found some solace in all of this, a refuge from oppression and intimidation. It’s in the Bible—Psalm 91—and the entire chapter focuses on one thing: God is willing and ready to protect you—yes, YOU—in all kinds of danger.

I’ll let you in on a secret. I keep a pile of laminated Psalm 91 index cards handy so I can grab one and go. I have them in my car, my purse, I take them on trips, but mostly I carry one in my hand when I go for a walk. I have fresh Psalm 91s, used Psalm 91s, and raggedy Psalm 91s. I like the raggedy ones the best. They have a good feel to them.

Several years ago, maybe in 2015 or so, I sensed the Lord telling me to pray Psalm 91 a thousand times. When I shared this with someone, they said, “OK. Pray it three times a day and you can be finished in a year.”

That’s not how I approach things. When I try to race through Bible reading just to say I’ve done it, I honestly don’t retain much. I like to squeeze the juice out of what I’m reading; I like to interact with what I’m reading; and I like to tear into it.

It’s kind of like when I went to Grenada on a mission trip back in the ‘80s. Kim, a Canadian full-time missionary there, picked up the local way of eating chicken. She ate each piece with great gusto, but unlike me—who when once the meat was pretty well picked off the bone, I’d set it down and reach for a fresh one—she would gnaw and chew every last tidbit of meat and gristle off that bone. Then, without hesitation, she would crack that bone and go after the marrow! She’d worked that chicken bone until there was nothing left but splinters!

That’s how I’m happiest with my Bible time. If I go for reading large amounts, I know I’ll miss out on so much. I go for the meat, the morsels, the tidbits, the gristle, and then crack that Bible “bone” to go in after the marrow. I may not cover the whole Bible in a year, but I sure get as much out of what I do read as I can.

Anyway, I’m somewhere in the four-hundreds in praying this Psalm. As you can see, I don’t do this every day, and sometimes I forget to tally when I do pray it, but nonetheless, Psalm 91 has become a dear friend to me.

As I walk my neighborhood and pray this Psalm, I often like to emphasize one word at a time in a verse. For example, take the shortest verse in the Bible, “Jesus wept.” Here’s how my “emphasis method” would go:

  • JESUS wept.” I’d ponder the fact that JESUS HIMSELF did the weeping. I would think about how the Lord HIMSELF had such deep, human emotions, and because of that, He has no problem understanding my sorrow or anguish.
  • “Jesus WEPT.” Now I would consider the fact that He actually WEPT. I’d think about salty tears falling down His face, and I’d be pulled into His moment, His feelings, His sorrow. I would find myself wanting to comfort Him.

As I walk and pray Psalm 91, I am frequently surprised by new ways of thinking about one verse or another. Of course, there are also times when I realize I haven’t listened to anything I’ve just prayed. When this happens, I simply start again where I first trailed off in my mind.

I’ve been sensing a leading by the Holy Spirit for a few months to start blogging about the amazing protective provisions God has revealed in this Psalm. I just need the boost to get started…and telling YOU I plan to do this should light the fire I need to get this meal cooking.

Please pray for me! I am asking for Holy Ghost get-up-and-go to grip and propel me so I can fulfill this task which I know He’s given me.

Thanks!

Dorothy

© 2020, Dorothy Frick

Read More