How thought provoking are the perceptions of David in Psalm 31, “Oh, how abundant is your goodness, which you have stored up for those who fear you” (verse 19), and then he adds, “and worked for those who take refuge in you …”. Is it possible that we will be in a situation this year of seeking to find refuge in the Lord? In some countries this is more likely than others.

David is not perfect in character, only our Lord achieved that, but in the relationship which David established with his Creator he declares, “I will rejoice and be glad in your steadfast love, because you have seen my affliction; you have known the distress of my soul, and you have not delivered me into the hand of the enemy; you have set my feet in a broad place” (verses 7,8). He says, “I hear the whispering of many – terror on every side! – as they scheme together against me, as they plot to take my life” (verse 13). But this is followed by a significant declaration, “But I trust in you, O LORD; I say, ‘You are my God.’ My times are in your hand … Make your face shine on your servant; save me in your steadfast love!” (verses 14-16).

We saw this in the life of Abraham and many believers have sensed that their times are in God’s hand – this is evident when we look back on the path travelled! Truly, Paul declared, “we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose” (Romans 8:29). We see this as, overall, being for the “good” of God’s purpose. Paul goes on to write about “those who he predestined” – but the reality of this is only seen in our lives we when look back on the path travelled; Abraham would have seen this!

We will need to sense, as we “work together with him” (2 Corinthians 6:1), that our Lord’s guiding hand is there and our “times are in his hand”. It is wonderful stimulus in our minds to memorise the last two verses of today’s Psalm, “Love the LORD, all you his saints! The LORD preserves the faithful but abundantly repays the one who acts in pride. Be strong, and let your heart take courage, all you who wait for the LORD!”