“Shew me a token for good; that they which hate me may see it, and be ashamed: because thou, Lord, hast holpen me, and comforted me.” Psalm 86:17
When was the last time you had “One of those days?” The type of day when everything goes wrong and then some. What do you do when all of life seems to be against you. It is easy to let discouragement take root and to keep looking down rather than looking up to the only One who can truly help.
David, the author of this Psalm, was having more than just a bad day. His own son, Absalom, was seeking to take his life. Talk about discouraging! It is in this dismal situation that David provides us an example of what we ought to do. He sought God for strength and encouragement. Particularly he was asking God to show him a token for good. Let’s ponder this token that David was asking for and then realize that we can come to God with the same request and expect that He will graciously answer.
- This token is a blessing. “…for good…” David was asking for God to show him a token for good. The word good is defined as something that is agreeable, pleasant and has the idea of being good in the widest sense of the word. David was asking for an extraordinary blessing from God. I am thankful that we can come to God in time of need and request a some good in the widest sense of the word. Something that would overwhelm us with the knowledge that God is in control of all things and is concerned with our particular situation.
- This token is a pledge. “…a token…” The word token means a sign, banner, pledge or proof. David request was for something that would stand as proof of God’s care in his life. God promises us in Hebrews 13:5 that He “…will never leave us nor forsake us.” That is fact! Maybe you, like David, just need something visible to reinforce that fact and promise – a token for good.
- This token is from God. David was seeking this token from God. We must remember in the midst of trials and discouraging situations that our God is the one we must seek for strength and encouragement. Too often we don’t seek encouragement from Him first. We run to friends and spill our hearts. We go on shopping sprees. We pop three bags of popcorn, open a Pepsi and go on a Andy Griffith Show marathon. We get on Facebook and publish our misery. There are many ways that people deal with discouraging situations. Psalm 46:1 “God is our refuge and strength, A very present help in trouble.” God alone has the ability to help us. Like David, we ought to seek a token for good from Him.
- This token is for you. “…me…” Have you stopped to think that God cares about you specifically? When you come to God seeking this token He will respond with exactly what you need. It will be custom-made for you. Further, this token is exclusively for the child of God. Psalm 34:15 “The eyes of the Lord are upon the righteous, And his ears are open unto their cry.” 1 Peter 5:7 “Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.” Be encouraged that God cares for you in specific and desires to prove that to you.
- This token is a testimony. “…that they may see it…” Here David was referring to his enemies – those that abhorred him. David desired that this token would cause his enemies to be ashamed. The word ashamed means to be confounded or humiliated. A token for good is a testimony causing the believer’s enemies to be confounded. Joshua 5:1 “And it came to pass, when all the kings of the Amorites, which were on the side of Jordan westward, and all the kings of the Canaanites, which were by the sea, heard that the Lord had dried up the waters of Jordan from before the children of Israel, until we were passed over, that their heart melted, neither was there spirit in them any more, because of the children of Israel.”Furthermore, when God delivers a token for good in your life He is magnified as the One who gives help and comfort. Remember that God’s working and blessing in your life will be a testimony for God to all around.
- This token can be requested. “…shew me…” David requested this token and so can you. Maybe you have found yourself in a situation that is discouraging, frustrating and draining. Praise the Lord that we can come to Him and request a visible sign of His care toward us!
- This token is readily given. God did show care for David in the midst of his trouble. God allowed Absalom’s hair to be caught in tree while riding, he was killed by Joab and David’s life was no longer in danger. Matthew 7:11 “If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him?” God stands ready to grant a token for good in your life as soon as you ask.
For Noah and his family, the world that welcomed them back from a voyage over God’s judgement must have been a little discouraging. As they offered a sacrifice to God, He chose in Genesis 9:13 to give them a token for good – A Rainbow, a pledge that God did care for them and would always remember them. There have been many times that I have come to God and asked for a token for good. Just in the last month I asked Him for one and He answered the next day through something said to me in a conversation. Do you need some proof that God cares for you? Do you need a little love note from your heavenly father saying I have it under control and you’ll be just fine. Do you need something from God to prove to you that He has not forgotten your situation. Ask God for it and expect that it’s on its way!