“My heart is steadfast O God, my heart is steadfast; I will sing, yes I will sing praises! Awake my glory…”
David writes these words in the 57 Psalm. In Cliff Graham’s new book Song of War, he draws a picture of David’s mighty men asking him what these words mean, ‘awake my glory,’ as he inspires them to sing this great chorus on the eve of battle. David replies: “You are born with glory inside of you, every man has courage and honor in his soul; Yahweh awakens it and you worship him with it.” Maybe this is why every man has a story and why each is worth the telling?
This morning the pastor said God has predestined no man to Hell. In the epic “Lonesome Dove,” Captain Call and Augustus McCray hang their best friend Jake Spoon cause he fell in with a bunch of horse thieves and murderers. As Spoon is straddling his horse with a hangmen’s knot around his neck; Gus and the Captain give him a chance to tell his story. Gus’s reply is simple, “I’m sorry you crossed the line.” Before Gus can slap the horse on the ass and complete the hanging, Spoon spurs the mare and essentially hangs himself. The choices we make!
Courage and honor don’t come cheap, in fact, they come with a great price over years of practice, discipline, example and sacrifice. These are heavy words, yet we are told they live in us; and, if we can capture them, they become our glory and God is pleased. How does a boy accomplish this without a father, or father figure? This is a good question given the overall lack of leadership by men both at home and in society. Speak of men being warriors, speak of life being a battle, speak of toughness, courage strength and you can watch the faces in the crowd roll their eye’s and silently whine “hear we go again”. Yet, our nation was founded on the citizen soldier and the armies of such nations have been the victors consistently over time. Do we battle that which is physical or spiritual? Could we be as Richard Rohr writes: spiritual beings trying to live a human experience; or Paul, who wrote of our struggle which was against powers and principalities not of human kind? Whichever will be your answer, Aristotle may have been right, as was David, “Courage is itself, a noble thing”; therefore, to speak of it often is a reminder, it must be pursued like a Lion.
When God told Moses to instruct the people to write God’s laws on their door posts; to speak them to their children, as they walked along the way and if they did, He would never leave them nor forsake them. We’re not these words for us as well? Yes, God our Father is always present to us; and, when a father speaks this to a son he gives hope to awaken that boys glory. Ain’t it so.