He anoints my head with oil, my cup overflows

When I was a little girl, my grandma taught me the Lord’s Prayer. “Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name…” We used to say it together before bed when my sister and I spent the night.

Those formal words from the King James version still bring me comfort and peace.

Many years later, 20 weeks pregnant with my youngest child, I began memorizing Psalm 23. I needed an extra avenue for comfort and peace. Together, they served me well in very trying times, and I meditate on Psalm 23 almost every day now. One of the things I love most is its all-encompassing nature. It truly tells of God’s sovereignty, love, power, protection, and generosity.

As we move into the future, I know more than ever that I must rely on the Lord for my every need. When I am hungry, He provides. When I am afraid, He strengthens. When I am hurting, He comforts. When I am confused, lost, or overwhelmed, He restores.

And when I trust Him, He anoints my head with oil, and my cup overflows. So today’s confession is a reminder to trust Him with everything.

He anoints my head with oil. My cup overflows.

Oil in the Bible is often symbolic of the Holy Spirit. Power, peace, and protection. This line gives me a visual of tipping my head back and allowing Him to pour thick, amber colored oil over my head. It seeps down to my skin and saturates me. It affects everything I do and think. Just as the Holy Spirit should affect me.

When I move in this anointing, I don’t have room to fear. I view people and life through His filter. The world is not a frightening place. Instead every interaction becomes an opportunity to point back to Him. I will confess this today and I will live in His power, peace, and protection.

What is your favorite part of Psalm 23?

I will call on the name of the Lord

I’m a strong believer that faith in God is far-reaching. Farther than we can begin to comprehend, in fact. I’ve talked to so many people who seem to believe that God’s help is limited to the spiritual realm. Salvation, grace, mercy, all that intangible stuff.

I disagree.

The Psalms are full of confessions that God saves, that He is a very present help in time of trouble, that He watches over us. While we put our trust in Him for the afterlife, not many of us put our trust in Him for THIS life. And we get caught up in bad decisions or poor thinking that seems to rule every earthly action. (I’m so talking to myself here.)

Negativity and depression want to rule my life. Wallowing in poor decisions of the past, I’m in danger of missing the glory and power He has for me today. What a perfect time to give those decisions, mistakes, and regrets to Him! Today’s confession, from Joel 2:32 and Romans 10:13, relieves me of the guilt and shame of the past.

I will call on the name of the Lord.

When I doubt His promise to deliver me, I will confess this truth. And I’ll turn to Psalm 121 for reinforcement. Especially meaningful to me is verse 5: “The Lord himself watches over you! The Lord stands beside you as your protective shade.” It gives me visions of being hidden in His shadow. The enemy passes right by, never even seeing me, because the Lord hides me in a protective shade.

I will call on the name of the Lord today. I will not fear because He stands beside me.

Do you believe God’s help is limited to spiritual things, or does He ever intervene in a tangible way?

 

The Lord protects all those who love Him

Several months ago, my husband and I watched the movie Inception with Leonardo DiCaprio. To put it simply, his character lives in a perpetual dream state. Once he seems to be awake, he wonders if he’s truly awake because his dreams were so real. It’s a fascinating movie that really messed with my mind for a few days because I dream very vividly and it seems to be a constant condition. Unfortunately, my dreams are rarely happy.

Last night’s dream was no exception. I woke in the dark, clutching the blankets and my husband’s arm, tears streaming, dragging in deep breaths like a woman starved for air. Only I was starving for reality. Today’s confession brings comfort because I know it is the truth.

The Lord protects all those who love Him.

This is taken straight from Psalm 145:20. It was tempting to make the confession, “The Lord protects me,” and He does, but I need to know that He protects all those who love Him (emphasis mine). My biggest fears involve harm to the ones I love, but if I can place them in God’s hands and trust that they have a relationship with Him, I can rest in the certainty that He will protect them far better than I can. In doing that, He protects me from destruction. I just have to trust Him.

That’s a tall order some days, trust. For that reason, I will speak this truth into my life today. I will speak it into the lives of the ones I love. The Lord protects my husband who loves Him. The Lord protects my children who love him. The Lord protects me.

What are your biggest fears?

 

I will not be shaken

Ever feel caught in the cross hairs?

If you believe in spiritual warfare, this is a fairly creepy experience. To think I can’t move without some kind of evil following me is unnerving. I want to hide under the bed or in the closet. I want to cry, quietly lest he hear me. I am filled with an urgent need to protect my children.

I suppose it started around Thanksgiving. My mom realized there was a leak in her kitchen pipes that sent water cascading into her basement. The damage extended into two rooms. The reconstruction crew has been less than adequate, causing stress, inconvenience, and a lot of time and money.

A week and a half before Christmas, my husband was in a car accident. Someone hit him from behind at nearly 80mph. (He and the other driver are okay, by the way.) Six days later, he hyperextended his knee at work and is possibly facing surgery and about a year of rehab. Walking, sitting, even lying down has become extremely painful.

And now, one week after my husband injured his knee, my parents have been in a car accident. None of these things have impacted my body directly, but my mind? Totally different story. I want to hide, to cry, to protect what’s mine. I want to escape the enemy and his attack.

Until this morning, I haven’t thought of hiding in the Bible. Now I open the pages, searching for reassurance, and realize this is my escape. I remember God and the enemy simply becomes annoying. When I focus on God, the enemy actually disappears. The Psalms are filled with encouragement, promises of God’s protection, and confessions of truth. Like this gem:

God is our refuge and strength, always ready to help in times of trouble. So we will not fear when earthquakes come and the mountains crumble into the sea. Psalm 46:1-2

And this:

I will not be shaken, for he is right beside me. Psalm 16:8

I will not be shaken.

I say it again. I will not be shaken. I will say it so many times today that it gets burned into my brain. Let the earthquakes come and the mountains crumble. I will not be shaken because I choose to believe in God’s goodness, His love, His sovereignty, and His protection.

How do you react when Satan aims his arrows? Are you shaken, or can you take comfort and confidence in God’s protection?