David is unique among the individuals whose lives are portrayed in the Bible because through his psalms he revealed the inner workings of his heart. In the same way that a surgeon is able to determine the condition of a heart through open heart surgery, we are able to see David’s motives, feelings, affections, and desires in his psalms and therefore, able to determine his attitude toward God.
Psalms 123 – 125 focus on three key aspects of David’s attitude toward God: 1) He is David’s superior, 2) He is on David’s side, and 3) He will always keep David safe. David lived a dangerous life. He was given the privilege of being king of Israel, but along with the privilege came a tremendous amount of responsibility and a life filled with trials and tribulations. It is no wonder David felt the need to pour his heart out and put to music the feelings that often overwhelmed him.
If you think about David’s attitude as his secret to success, then each of these three psalms, 123 – 125 provides insight into how you can develop the same successful attitude. Everyone has adversity in their lives and if you are a Believer, you will have trials and tribulations to get through. The attitude you develop toward God is completely within your control. Whether you have a good attitude or bad attitude depends on the perspective you take in viewing your situation.
More people than you might imagine have the attitude that God is their inferior. They think they can tell God what to do and their prayers are his to do list. David’s prayers were consistent with God’s character and did not dictate the how, only the what David was asking for. Included in David’s petitions were reasons or justification for the request and reverence toward the one he was addressing.
Have mercy upon us, O LORD, have mercy upon us: for we are exceedingly filled with contempt. Our soul is exceedingly filled with the scorning of those that are at ease, and with the contempt of the proud. (Psalm 123:3-4)
In every battle there are at least two adversaries, and therefore, two sides that God can take in providing assistance. Many people go through life with the attitude that God is against them. They think every time they turn around, God is putting another stumbling block in their pathway, continually tripping them up, and making sure they get nowhere in life. David not only believed God was on his side, but every time he escaped from his enemy, he gave God credit for providing the escape route. David said in Psalm 124, “The snare is broken, and we are escaped. Our help is in the name of the LORD, Who made heaven and earth” (Psalm 124:7-8).
When tragedy strikes, the easiest thing to do is blame God. Probably the most common question asked of him is, where were you…? David states in Psalm 125, “As the mountains are round about Jerusalem, so the LORD is round about his people from henceforth even for ever” (Psalm 125:2). David used the example of the mountains around Jerusalem to describe God’s protection because of the permanence of the natural structure. It is not God who moves, but us when separation occurs. Like a child that wanders off from his parent at the shopping mall, it is possible to be separated from our father, but David knew that it was he that did the wandering, not God.