The Psychological Advantage


I like to think of King David as a warrior. He’s the guy that entire armies were afraid of. When he stepped on to the battlefield, it gave his army the psychological advantage. It boosted his army’s confidence and crushed that of his enemy. But that’s not the complete picture of who David was. When you read the Psalms, you see a guy who was worried and afraid at times. You see the thoughts of that brave warrior written down in black and white saying he was terrified at times.

No one can be brave and strong all the time. No one is impervious to the words that others hurl at us. After a while, they get to us. They penetrate deep into our mind and heart. They start to cause doubt. They can cause paranoia to. That’s where David was in Psalm 31. He said, “I’m in deep, deep trouble again. I’ve cried my eyes out; I feel hollow inside… My troubles have worn me out.” Even the great warrior David had days where he felt insecure and alone.

He didn’t stay like that though. He didn’t let those thoughts dominate his mind and keep him in that state. He knew how to get out of it. Verse 1 gives us his answer to getting free of the mindset that is constantly worries. David said, “I run to you, God; I run for dear life.” He knew that God was his fortress and his cave made of granite that would protect him. In verses 14-18 he says, “Desperate, I throw myself on you: you are my God! Hour by hour I place my days in your hand, safe from the hands out to get me.”

Every time the thoughts of insecurity came into his mind, he went back to God. When fear crept in, he called out to God. “Hour by hour,” he said. It wasn’t a daily thing. It was an hourly thing. He knew not to let those thoughts linger in his mind. They’re destructive and counterproductive. They are thoughts meant to pull you away from who you are in Christ. Don’t let them rule your mind. When they pop up, run to God like David did. Call out to Him and speak to who He is.

When we speak to how great our God is, our problems don’t seem so big anymore. When we call out to Him for help, we win the psychological battle. Just like when David stepped onto the battlefield, God steps into our situation and gives us the victory before there is ever a fight. He is our strong tower. He is our defender. He gives us the victory in our hearts, minds and lives. When the enemy hears us call to Him and sees Him co ing to our defense, they know the battle is over. You know the battle is over.

I love how he ends Psalm 31 in verse 24. He says this to you, “Be brave. Be strong. Don’t give up. Expect God to get here soon.” I don’t know of any better words of encouragement than that. When you call out to God, He’ll be on His way to help you. In the mean time, be brave and strong. Don’t give up or let the enemy win the psychological advantage over you before the battle begins. God is on your side today and He’s on His way!

7 Comments

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7 responses to “The Psychological Advantage

  1. Chris, thanks for leading me to Psalm 31. Just this week I’ve been fighting and casting off ill thoughts about my life and God’s interposition. This entry is a reminder to me that God is present and active and will reveal himself. I love the end of verse 7: “You have known my soul in adversities.” What a comfort to know that God has plunged the depths of fear and misery with me when I couldn’t express myself to others. He understands our feelings and states of mind. It makes the last verse even sweeter.

    • God has not left you nor forsaken you. He understands the depths of your doubts and the fear of an unknown future that is gripping you. I love reading this in the different translations to get better meaning from it. I was quoting The Message today. Be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might today. I’m lifting you and your situation up in prayer today. God is on His way!

      • I really appreciate that, Chris…truly.

      • Mike,

        I just wanted to let you know that aside from praying for you today personally, our small group at church also prayed for you.

      • It means so much to me, Chris. I thank you and your small group. You may understand what it feels like to always be the one interceding for others and rejoicing for their victories but wondering, God, what about me? One can get weary fighting disappointment and cares. It means so very much to me to know that others, brothers and sisters, I’ve never met are strengthening me by their prayers. Deeply grateful, thank you all.

  2. Great insight Chris…..David…..one of my very favorite characters…perhaps because I can relate so many times……..

    • Thank you. He’s one of mine too. I love that he was so transparent with his faith, fears and doubts He could have hidden behind the warrior mask his whole life, but be didn’t. He articulated the fears and doubts that so many of us have, but are afraid to admit.

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