This morning’s devotional comes from Day By Day By Grace by Bob Hoekstra.
I love thee, O LORD, my strength. The LORD is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strong rock, in him will I trust; my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my high tower. I will call upon the LORD, who is worthy to be praised: so shall I be saved from mine enemies. Psalms 18:1-3
The scriptures are quite clear. The work of God in our lives depends upon His promises to us, not our promises to Him. However, this does not mean that we are forbidden to express our love and devotion to God through promises made to Him. In this rich testimony from the heart of David, he makes two significant promises to the Lord. “I will love You, O LORD . . . I will call upon the LORD.” As we examine what accompanies these promises, we will see the kind of promises that are permissible to make to God.
Loving God is the essence of our relationship with the Lord.
Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. Matthew 22:37
Our love for the Lord is in response to His great love for us.
We love Him, because he first loved us. 1 John 4:19
Long ago, the Lord had promised that He would be available to work in the heart of His people, if they were to love Him properly.
And the LORD thy God will circumcise thine heart, and the heart of thy seed, to love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, that thou mayest live. Deuteronomy 30:6
The context of David’s promises to love God indicates that He understood this promise from the Lord. “I will love You, O LORD, my strength.” God was the one David was trusting in to give him the strength that was needed to walk in a loving relationship with the Lord.
As we grow in awareness of the love of God, we learn to call upon Him to deliver us in times of trouble. “I will call upon the LORD, who is worthy to be praised; So shall I be saved from my enemies.” David’s promise to cry out to God in the midst of difficulties was based upon the Lord’s praiseworthy character. David had called upon the Lord many times before, and He had delivered him. David had come to know the Lord (to experience Him) as his mighty protector. “The LORD is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer; My God, my strength, in whom I will trust.”
As we noted previously, in Israel’s promises to obey the law of God, they were depending upon themselves. In David’s promises to love God and to call upon Him in times of trouble, he was depending upon the character and capacities of God!
Dear loving and rescuing Lord, my love for You is truly a result of Your work of love in my heart! Likewise, my cries to You for help are based upon Your many faithful rescues in times past! You are my God, my strength, in whom I will trust!