Psalm 31:9-16 (ESV)
9 Be gracious to me, O Lord, for I am in distress;
my eye is wasted from grief;
my soul and my body also.
10 For my life is spent with sorrow,
and my years with sighing;
my strength fails because of my iniquity,
and my bones waste away.
11 Because of all my adversaries I have become a reproach,
especially to my neighbors,
and an object of dread to my acquaintances;
those who see me in the street flee from me.
12 I have been forgotten like one who is dead;
I have become like a broken vessel.
13 For I hear the whispering of many—
terror on every side!—
as they scheme together against me,
as they plot to take my life.
14 But I trust in you, O Lord;
I say, “You are my God.”
15 My times are in your hand;
rescue me from the hand of my enemies and from my persecutors!
16 Make your face shine on your servant;
save me in your steadfast love!
My times are in your hand.
I am mistaken to ever think myself abandoned and unaided.
“Our God sits not still as a listless spectator of our griefs, suffering us to be drifted like waifs upon the waters of circumstance,” Charles Spurgeon observed in a sermon preached more than a century ago.
How could He? The very hands in question were nailed to the Cross for my redemption.
Taken in hand, resting presently near the divine heart, Spurgeon assured his English congregants that God Himself ever “leads us that He may bring us home to the place where His flock shall rest forever.”
Evil’s terrifying yet doomed offensive is launched, in the end, not against my feeble resistance but against nothing less than the power of God’s grace.
O thou who hearest when sinners cry
Though all my crimes before thee lie.
Behold them not with angry look.
But blot their memory from thy book.
(–from Isaac Watt’s paraphrase of Psalm 51)