Psalms 18:28 -29 “You, o Lord keep my lamp burning my God turns my darkness into light. 29  With your help I can advance against a troop with my God I can scale a wall.”

I love reading Psalms and Psalms 18 caught my attention especially verse 28 -29 .  when there is so much darkness around us and God turns our darkness into light; many things happen as King David acknowledges – “I can advance against a troop and with my God I can scale a wall.”

There’s a difference between a wall and a troop - a wall is a natural thing, not a supernatural obstacle; a troop is a natural thing, an army; a lion; a bear; even Goliath - although he was a giant - was a natural man. But David is attributing the help to do that earthly natural thing to God, it is God who is empowering him to excel in it. Of course David could climb walls, and maybe you can climb a wall, he could even leap over small walls - but here the insinuation is that God is enabling David to do the extraordinary in the natural realm. Are you seeing the distinction? It's not something that David could not do himself whatsoever, God had to be in it. And it wasn't something, David says, that he could do just in and of himself, but it was something that David was doing and God was helping him to do it well.

What is a wall? have you ever thought about what a wall is, apart from the natural bricks and mortar? A wall is something that restricts, isn't it? If you like, it binds you, it binds you in or binds others out, but it is a hindrance - probably to David it was a hindrance getting in somewhere, but it could also be a hindrance getting out, it could be a hindrance moving forward. It might be a large hindrance, we're not told how large this wall was that David leaped over, but it could have been an intimidating wall, a very high wall towering, casting a terrible shadow on you beneath. He said: With your help I can advance against a troop ' - a troop is in the open field, it's a conflict where you're surrounded by soldiers, but a wall is different: a wall is a restriction in a tight place surrounded by stones. You're kept in, others are kept out - if you like, it is a dead end in life. It's cold: there's no life in a brick and mortar. It's hard, it's impersonal, and it is man-made. We all have them - I don't know what your wall is, I know what mine are - we all have them, we will experience them, but what is often common with all of us with regards to our walls is that we usually resent them - is that not true? We don't want them.

This is the first thing that I want you to learn: this experience that he testifies of was not a removal of a wall, a demolition or destruction of a wall, but it was rather the scaling of it! God did not bring down a supernatural ball and chain and demolish the wall, but rather God empowered him to scale the wall. Now there's a distinction here, and it's important to note the distinctions of Scripture. This is not faith to remove a mountain, it is faith to leap over walls. There's a difference.

So what we are talking about here are not obstacles that are impossible to overcome, that need a supernatural miraculous intervention of God in our lives to get the victory over, but what we're talking about today are natural things that are difficult. They may be natural things that are improbable for us to overcome, and the odds may all be against us. They may even exert us to the end of our strength, even beyond strength if that were possible, but I do want you to see this distinction: that we're not speaking essentially of when God breaks through in the supernatural - we believe in that, God is the God of miracles, He is the God of wonders - but we're not talking about when God suspends the laws of the natural, but rather when God breaks through in our experience into the natural realm and helps us overcome not impossibilities but difficulties.

God enjoys working in the lives of His children. He doesn't deal every day in the flashing lights, in the lightning experiences, in the earthquakes, in the fire, in the rushing mighty wind, but generally speaking God moves in His providential circumstances and dealings in a quiet way with His children - quietly, unassuming. This is how He works with us with the obstacles that we face every day, these great obstacles can be overcome by God with His help - but often they're done in an unseen manner.

David knew it, God knew it, that it was through divine help that David knew this experience of excelling in natural things by the power of God. It didn't matter how many other people knew it, it was a still small voice between David and his God, that this ordinary thing was made extraordinary because God was with him in it. Our dear reader, we only need to look to Calvary to behold that even in the greatest transaction of God with men - and I want you not to misunderstand what I'm about to say - but to the naked natural eye that scene on Golgotha's hill, with the three crosses, and the centre one with our Lord upon it, it was a natural and ordinary scene essentially. What I mean is, if you were in the crowd that day, with the naked eye it would be difficult to tell any difference between the Christ of God in the middle and the two thieves on either side - except what was coming from their mouths.

God loves to work quietly in our lives day by day, and no more so when we have walls to leap over. He gets a certain glory that most do not see, but you see it, you know it, and God knows it - and it's something sweetly personal to you. Look at the first person in the language: 'For by thee I have run through a troop; and by my God have I leaped over a wall'. It wasn't the words of a witness who said: 'One day I was fighting for David, and I saw him leaping over a wall, I saw him running through a troop' - it's personally precious to David. I ask you today, around this beautiful verse: if you're a child of God, do you not have those personally precious sweet things to remember between only you and God? Walls that He has helped you leap over. This was something that David had in his heart, and like Mary the mother of the Lord Jesus in the nativity scene, he had kept all these things, these intimate dealings with God, and pondered them in his heart. 'By my God have I leaped over a wall'.

This is often God's way of working with His children - not to immediately remove our walls, but by empowering us to leap over them.

Our dear reader; walls will come; troops will come - but the real question for the child of God is: how do we greet them? Do we greet them as obstacles - 'I don't want that in my life' - or opportunities? Do we see them as things to hinder or to help our communion with the Lord, or are we like Nehemiah - remember what he said? Nehemiah chapter 6 and verse 3, they were calling him down from the walls that he was building for the Lord: 'And I sent messengers unto them, saying, I am doing a great work, so that I cannot come down: why should the work cease, whilst I leave it, and come down to you?'. Do we see the walls in our lives as a great work? We can't leave them, although we feel like running away from them! We feel like the Psalmist in 139: 'If I had wings I would go to the uttermost parts of the sea and get away from my walls'.

I wonder have you met a wall, or even walls recently in your life? You're like the Psalmist in another place who said in 107: 'Those who meet these obstacles reel, at times, to and fro, and stagger like a drunken man, and are at their wits end'.

Comforting thought for the week

God loves to work quietly in our lives day by day, and no more so when we have walls to leap over. Great obstacles can be overcome when God is with us.

 

Paul said in 1 Corinthians 16 to those wavering weak-kneed Corinthians: 'Quit you like men, be strong, it's time to stand at the battle'! It's time to realise that whatever walls there may be, and mountains, and crevices and valleys - that we can leap over them by our God: God is with us! Don't run away from the challenges and the trials and the perplexities and the walls, but trust God to do the extraordinary in your ordinary, in your natural, in your mundane. Philip Brooks, the puritan, said: 'Do not pray for easy lives, pray to be stronger men. Do not pray for tasks equal to your powers, pray for powers equal to your tasks. Then the doing of your work shall be no miracle, but you shall be the miracle'