“The Lord is my strength and my shield;
In him my heart trusts, and I am helped;
my heart exults,
and with my song, I give thanks to him.” Psalm 28:7, ESV
So often, the sentiment begins, “The Lord is my strength and my shield… whom shall I fear?” But in this sentiment, a second word follows: “In him my heart trusts… and I am helped.” We do not always know how the Lord helps, but as we press closer to him, as we draw nearer to him, we sense the Lord’s help. We believe, and we are helped. Yes, the Lord is our strength and our shield.
The pronoun “my” is employed throughout: the Lord is my strength, my shield, and my heart trusts, and with my song, I praise him. The psalmist strikes a possessive tone: this is his part, his only part, the whole. He is completely in him and no part of him is elsewhere else. There is no other place to be, no sure place, no place of safety.
In this place, his heart exults, and he offers his sacrifice: a song — “and with my song, I give thanks to him” — and in this instance, it is not “and I will give thanks to him,” but, this present moment, this present place, under these present circumstances, the here and now. Thus wells up a word of praise and a word of hope.