David, the second King of Israel, is looking back over his life and expressing so many various emotions. As he reviews his leadership with its challenges and temptations and successes too, he is so aware of the truth and fact that Almighty God gives strength.
In this most structured piece of writing in the second book of Samuel and you can read all the detail at Chapter 22, even while he is praising God, David goes on to make so many personal references, and why shouldn't he?
He knew this amazing truth that there can be times when God stoops down to minister to us, and to bless us, and of course, we see Him doing this supremely in Jesus.
There is that wonderful picture which is so practical, when David describes how God guarded him and kept him, especially when you consider some of the narrow paths of the Judean hillside. Check out the detail and observe how specific this leader is and how secure he was under the most arduous conditions.
God is alive. David knew the reality of that only too well, and God speaks and acts and moves and heals and transforms people.
Verses 47 to 50 in our passage are all about praise, and this is being uttered 3,000 years ago, and as David draws near the end of his life.
David never forgot he was a sinner who had been saved and rescued by the grace of God which was available to him at that time. This leader knew how sin could bring down a king.
David's success was ultimately God's doing. His rise was totally of God, from the beginning, and his anointing was of God, and his being rescued was of God, and David needed a whole series of rescuings.
He even makes personal references here through all these words of praise. He cannot keep his own experiences out of it, and why should he?
This is a shepherd boy taken from looking after the flock to this highest of positions in the world.
God is so generous when He gives to His servants.
David is a very specially chosen vessel.
When God rescues, He can also show wrath upon His enemies, and when God is our refuge, there is no need to fear!
What a theme for us today, when we look back, and dare to look forward, having moved into a New Year, but this theme is relevant and apposite at any time in the life of a leader.
Verse 51 speaks about God saving His anointed one. Sometimes we need saving and rescuing over and over again, because we cam ka e such a mess of things.
We read of the greatness of salvation, and its source is God, and only comes from God, through Jesus Christ, and it lasts.
God will never change His mind saying - I have made a mistake saving that man - or saving that woman - or showing that person mercy and love and forgiving his sins.
God never changes His mind regarding these vital matters!
Leaders could benefit so greatly and so immensely and so profoundly by taking time to read and study and contemplate these enlightening words from a man who experienced the hazards and rewards of leadership.
Sandy Shaw is Pastor of Nairn Christian Fellowship, Chaplain at Inverness Prison, and Nairn Academy, and serves on The Children's Panel in Scotland, and has travelled extensively over these past years teaching, speaking, in America, Canada, South Africa, Australia, making 12 visits to Israel conducting Tours and Pilgrimages, and most recently in Uganda and Kenya, ministering at Pastors and Leaders Seminars, in the poor areas surrounding Kampala, Nairobi, Mombasa and Kisumu.
He broadcasts regularly on WSHO radio out of New Orleans, and writes a weekly commentary at http://www.studylight.org/ entitled "Word from Scotland" on various biblical themes, as well as a weekly newspaper column.
His M.A. and B.D. degrees are from The University of Edinburgh, and he continues to run and exercise regularly to maintain a level of physical fitness.