The Shadow of His Wings

"Because You are my help, I sing in the shadow of Your wings" text on a background of dove's wings

I came across this verse in Psalms recently, and I was draw to the imagery, the beauty of being helped and able to sing beneath the shadow of the Lord’s wings. Sometimes, when a Bible verse lands strongly on my heart and mind, I look carefully at each word and dive into commentaries to try to understand the context around it. The part that pulled me in initially is the “shadow of Your wings” - why the shadow? Why not the wing itself? At first, I thought of baby birds being sheltered by their mother’s wings, yet that’s not a shadow of a wing. 

As I researched and studied, I found that summer in the land of Israel can be quite hot. Some areas can reach near 100° F, and near the Dead Sea, it can be over 120° F. Clouds are extremely rare in the summer, so nothing protects a person from the power of the sun’s rays. 

And, in the Carolinas, we understand sweltering heat. With the kind humidity that drenches every inch of your skin, to where it feels like you’ve taken a shower the moment you step out into the sunshine. It’s not currently warm here, but those hot, summer days are not forgotten. When movement is sluggish, and all that is desired is a cool breeze or a break from the restless rays of sun. I’m a girl who loves warm weather, but even I can appreciate the 10 degree difference shade can make. The relief and rest that a covering can bring. 

And in this Psalm, that’s what David found in the shadow of His wings. Relief, rest, comfort, shelter, protection. Because the Lord helped him, David was able to sing for joy and with confidence and thankfulness. 

The beautiful part is that we can find the same. Feeling weighed down? Pressed upon? Weary? Exhausted? Needing a moment to be refreshed or replenished? Is life spinning out of control? Are you restless and looking for purpose, for meaning? Is your heart aching, and you just need to know you’re not alone? Just like those incredibly hot, summer days, sometimes life beats down upon us, and we just need a break. Some relief. Some shade. That’s Jesus. He is our shield, our fortress in times of trouble. He is our rock, our resting place when we need solace. He is our protector, defender, and guide when we wonder if anyone stands with us. He is our shelter when we need covering. 

And, beneath the shadow of His wings, we find He is faithful. We see He is our help, our strength. And, we can find new songs to sing, ones filled with joy and hope.

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