Psalm 56—Fearlessly Trusting God Who Puts Tears in a Bottle

Psalm 56—Fearlessly Trusting God Who Puts Tears in a Bottle

Honestly, I do not know many people who have it as bad as David. Think Saul or Goliath. Enemies without. And battling his own sinfulness within. Think Bathsheba. He was a victim of others, and he brought troubles upon himself.

There’s hope for you and me.

“Be gracious to me, O God, for man tramples on me; all day long an attacker oppresses me; my enemies trample on me all day long, for many attack me proudly.” Psalm 56:1-2

David beseeches God to be gracious in the face of enemies walking all over him. His proud attackers are relentless. However, they are up against a God who gives grace to those who need it. Sufficient.

“When I am afraid, I put my trust in you. In God, whose word I praise, in God I trust; I shall not be afraid. What can flesh do to me?” Psalm 56:3-4

Let’s be clear. Relentless enemies are cause for fear. The saying goes, “Hurting people hurt people.” Pain. Brokenness. David knows the secret that in the face of real fear he can intentionally place his trust in his gracious God.

An eternal perspective helps give context. Seriously, what can mere man do? David praises God’s word, his truth. And he places his trust in God.

“All day long they injure my cause; all their thoughts are against me for evil. They stir up strife, they lurk; they watch my steps, as they have waited for my life. For their crime will they escape? In wrath cast down the peoples, O God!” Psalm 56:5-7

If you’ve experienced loss in any form, you know your trust will be tested by your painful circumstances. Attacks that are relentless are ongoing. They recur. Like the waves of an ocean, attacks break upon your shores. Your very life purpose is called into question. Your faith is tested. They’ve premeditated evil. They seek strife. They lie in wait, watching and waiting.

Even the most trusting begin to wonder if their enemies will get away with their evil. Pain is enduring.

“You have kept count of my tossings; put my tears in your bottle. Are they not in your book?” Psalm 56:8

I love Matthew 9:35-38. This passage has Jesus leading his disciples from village to village. They’re healing and teaching. They seem to pause at a new village to rest possibly. Jesus, upon seeing the multitudes before him, “…had compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd” (Matthew 9:36).

When it seems like God does not feel compassion for you, refuse to succumb to that tempting thought. He has compassion for the harassed and helpless. He knows our sense of foreboding. He catches our tears and documents them in a book.

Don’t tell me he doesn’t care.

“Then my enemies will turn back in the day when I call. This I know, that God is for me. In God, whose word I praise, in the Lord, whose word I praise, in God I trust; I shall not be afraid. What can man do to me?” Psalm 56:9-11

The brokenness of this world will end. Pain will be met with relief. By faith, we must proclaim to ourselves that God is for us. We trust him, and we praise him. And we respond in deeds of faith. He is for us, and we are for him. We gratefully keep vows, our promises to God.

He doesn’t save us, deliver us, or keep our feet from stumbling for no cause. He empowers us with resurrection power to walk in his ways in the light of the gospel.

“For you have delivered my soul from death, yes, my feet from falling that I may walk before God in the light of life.” Psalm 56:13


  1. Lynn

    Amen and Amen! Thank you for sharing.

    • D. Ray Davis

      Thank you, Lynn.

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