Praying with David from Psalm 27 – Part 1

Psalm 27 is one of the great gifts to the church. In this Psalm, we learn how to pray.

First, prayer sharpens our vision. David wrote in verse 1, “The LORD is my light.” We often pray because we feel we are in the dark. “Lord, what should I do, what should I think, where do I go?” When we pray with confused hearts or minds, the words “the Lord is my light” give us clarity. We don’t know what is best, but the Lord does because he is our light. Prayer gives light to our vision.

Secondly, prayer restores our courage in moments of trouble. David asks in verse 1, “Whom shall I fear?” If God is my light and salvation, who do I need to be afraid of? Why should I be scared? David had lots of people to fear – mocking Goliath, spear-hurling King Saul, and raiding Amalekites. But who are they compared to the God of light and salvation?! Prayer is an act of defiance against our foes. In prayer, we get down on our knocking knees in fear, but we get up off our knees in confidence asking, what can I possibly fear?

Thirdly, prayer reminds us that we are on the right side of the battle front. David confidently declares, “Though an army encamp against me, my heart shall not fear. Though war rise against me, yet I will be confident” (v3). The spiritual war we engage in is ferocious. They are many; we are few. Just like David fighting Saul or the Philistines. But in the end, it was huge Goliath on the ground and little David standing over him in victory. When we open our eyes, we see we are outnumbered. When we close our eyes in prayer, we remember that we are on the winning side.

Finally, prayer is looking at the face of God. Surely verse 4 is one of the most beautiful statements in all the Bible – “One thing have I asked of the LORD, that will I seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the LORD and to inquire in his temple.” David saw so much ugliness, from the battlefield of the Ziphites to the battlefield of his own heart. Prayer gives us Someone beautiful to look at.

More to come next week on praying with David from Psalm 27.