Let’s look at Psalm 3 today. But, before we do, let’s look at one word that we are going to see a few times – the word is Selah. It is a word used frequently in the Psalms, but the meaning of the Hebrew word Selah is uncertain. It may be a musical or liturgical direction, because so many of the Psalms were written as poems or songs, but the closest we can get to defining it is “Pause.”
Psalm 3 is a Psalm of David, written when he was fleeing from his son, Absalom. David had real fears. He was running for his life. So with the meaning of the word Selah, and the very real fears David faced in mind, let’s read what David wrote, pause every time you read the word, Selah:
3 O Lord, how many are my foes!
Many are rising against me;
2 many are saying of my soul,
“There is no salvation for him in God.” Selah.
3 But you, O Lord, are a shield about me,
my glory, and the lifter of my head.
4 I cried aloud to the Lord,
and he answered me from his holy hill. Selah.
5 I lay down and slept;
I woke again, for the Lord sustained me.
6 I will not be afraid of many thousands of people
who have set themselves against me all around.
7 Arise, O Lord!
Save me, O my God!
For you strike all my enemies on the cheek;
you break the teeth of the wicked.
8 Salvation belongs to the Lord;
your blessing be on your people! Selah.
This Psalm is not about what we are doing. It is about what God will do for us. He is our shield. He will lift our heads. There are many times in scripture where we are told to do certain things – we are to go and tell others about Jesus, we are to study and show ourselves approved; we are to love our neighbors. However, this part of scripture isn’t about that. This psalm tells us we can rest because God is our shield. We can rest because he is the lifter of our heads.
Many of the fears that we face are real, the decisions we have to make that cause our heart to race, the concerns that keep us up at night, are legitimate concerns.
Name your fear, your concern, that thing that’s not letting you rest – say it out loud to our Father.
How many are the concerns and fears that rise up against us. Remind us that you are our shield, that you send answers and help when we cry out. Father bring us rest, because we know that you sustain us, that you protect us, that you are the lifter of our heads. Thank you for this day of rest, for this moment of Selah.
Thank you for pausing for a moment with me today and more than anything, may you find your rest in the one who came to save you, the one who lifts your head. May his blessing be on your people.