February 18, 2022

Day 19: Wheelbarrow

Read Psalm 34-35

Charles Blondin was a French tightrope walker from the 1800s. One time while touring the United States he took a tight rope over 1,000 feet across the Niagara Falls. He walked across it to the roar of the crowd. He then he walked across it blindfolded and then he walked across it on stilts and then he walked halfway across, stopped and made himself an omelette and ate it and then walk the rest of the way. 

He then took a wheelbarrow filled it with coal and went back and forth with the crowd going crazy with delight. And then he turned to the crowd and asked... "Who here thinks that I could put them in this wherlbarrow and cart them across the Niagara Falls"? Thousands of hands go up. And then he asks, "Who would be willing to come into the wheelbarrow and prove it"? And every hand went down. 

You know, it's one thing to say that you believe; it's quite another thing to prove it with your life. Faith is believing that the Great Blondin can take the wheelbarrow across the Niagara Falls. Trust is getting into the wheelbarrow and letting him do it with you! Faith and trust. Faith and trust are kissing cousins but there is a difference between the two. You see, faith is a confidence, trust is a commitment. Faith is a noun, trust is a verb. Faith believes but trust does. Ultimately, trust is putting your faith into action.

Psalm 34 was written after David escaped from the king of Gath. It's a psalm that demonstrates a trust in God and His protection and deliverance. God indeed protected and delivered David. However, not all the actions of David reflected a trust in God. The story of David's escape from the Philistines in Gath is recorded in 1 Samuel 21. It tells us what David did when threatened by them in v. 13: "So he changed his behavior before them and pretended to be insane in their hands and made marks on the doors of the gate and let his spittle run down his beard."

This doesn't seem like distinguished behavior from a future king (King Saul was still in power in Israel). Though an argument could be made for it being an effective strategy in escaping his enemies while in their land. But I wonder if there was a more God glorifying way for David to handle the situation than pretended to be a madman. Perhaps David needed this season in the wilderness on the run from Saul, and from other rulers like Abimelech, to learn how to fully trust God. To grow in learning how to "get into the wheelbarrow" with God.

He certainly demonstrated a desire to trust God in Psalm 34 and 35. You see David's trust level in the opening and ending of Psalm 34. In v. 1 he writes, "I will bless the LORD at all times; his praise shall continually be in my mouth." and then he ends the psalm in v. 22 with these words: "The LORD redeems the life of his servants; none of those who take refuge in him will be condemned." David demonstrated his trust by choosing to "bless the LORD at all times". No matter the situation he could choose to bless God. Why? Because he knew that "none of those who take refuge in him will be condemned". God honors those who honor Him.

So get into the wheelbarrow and trust God with whatever He is asking you to do or wherever He is leading. 

Is there something you need to trust God with right now in your life? What would it look like to do so?

Chapter 35 is a prayer of David calling out to God for help. What do you need to call out to God about?

Prayer for the day: "Dear God, you are worthy of all my trust. Help me to not try and control my own life but let you lead every part of it. Thank you that you have redeemed my life and filled it with hope and joy. I submit to your will today. In Jesus name. Amen."

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