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When Loved Ones Break your Heart (Psalm 4)

You have loved, but the one whom you loved:

a child, a sibling, a parent, a sister, a brother in Christ…

has turned on you.

Betrayal by loved ones is shocking and heart-breaking.

What did David do when his own son turned against him,

wanting his throne, plotting murder against his own father?

David was hiding in a cave, his heart breaking.

What did he do?

Psalm 4, a follow up to Psalm 3, shows us.

In Psalm 3, he cried out  to “My God.”

But this time it is to “my righteous God,”

or, as the ESV puts it: “God of my righteousness!”

This week Paul Tripp will illumine Psalm 4 with great wisdom.

And Sara Groves will prepare out hearts for David’s situation with this:

On a personal note, I would love your prayers for this week:

Tuesday through Saturday in the Texas prisons speaking (anointing and favor)

Wednesday night: Speaking at Temple Bible Church in Texas (same)

Saturday night flying home (safety and on-time flights)

Sunday: Filming the promotional at my house for The Jesus Who Surprises. (Rested, good weather, anointing for me and for Ben, the producer)

You are my faithful sisters and I do covet your prayers. I know He is the rewarder of those who diligently seek Him and that the prayer of a righteous woman is effective. Thank you!



1. What stands out to you from the above and why?

Monday: Answer me when I call

2. Read all of Psalm 4, and summarize the main point.

3. Did any verse come alive to you? If so, meditate on it and share what you see.

Tuesday: O My Righteous God!

4. Read Psalm 4:1 and share how David approaches God.

5. What is David’s lament in verse 2?

6. What, does David know for certain about God in verse 3?

7. Compare this to 1 Peter 2:23. What parallel do you see? How do you see Jesus here as the “greater David?”

8. How might you apply this when loved ones break your heart?

Wednesday: Be angry, do not sin, and experience His presence.

It is always wise when accused to do as Dawson Trotman did. Take the criticism into your prayer closet and sift it out to see if there is a kernel of truth in it. This is what David does now. He’s angry, but he is careful not to sin.

9. What does David tell his soul in verses 4 and 5?

10. If you are in a situation like this right now, do this, and see what HIs Spirit tells you. (You don’t need to share unless you choose to!)

The other night at my church, I was teaching Idol Lies and explaining that idols demand a propitiation, a sacrifice. Ann asked, “Can you give examples?” I shared how they had demanded peace in my relationships, my health, but most of all, the presence of God.” It made me think about the women in prison who are surrendered to the Lord, and who, despite the paucity of their circumstances, have such joy in the presence of God. This is one of my favorite pictures, and it is typical of their worship.

And then I thought of David, hiding in a cave, betrayed by his son, and yet — he says this:

11. As you contemplate Psalm 4:7, what do you see, and how will you apply it?


12. Psalm 4 is an evening psalm, next week we will look at Psalm 5, a morning psalm. In Psalm 4:6-8, what does David know to be true about God that will help him sleep in such frightening circumstances?







13. How could you apply this psalm now or be ready to apply it when the need arises?

Thursday-Friday: Paul Tripp on Psalm 4

14. Dr Tripp is a very wise Christian counselor. Listen and share your notes and comments:

      In the Cave and Unafraid - Dr. Paul Tripp



15. What is your take-a-way and why?





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  1. Dee,

    Isaiah 40:29   He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak.

    May you be strengthened and encouraged all along the way this week, Dee.


  2. 1.  What stands out to you from the above and why?

    The Sara Groves song and accompanying quotes and scripture that the producer of this video incorporated.

    At one point this verse appears:   “I will give you treasures of darkness, hidden wealth of secret places  so that you may know that it is I, the Lord, the God of Israel who calls you by your name.”     Isaiah 45:3      As I’ve mentioned here in times past, this verse describes what the Lord did for me 36 years ago when our baby girl died.      And He still does in dark and confusing times.

    At the end of the song there is reference to those who joined David in that cave ~ in that dark time.  I Samuel 22:2   “And everyone who was in distress, and everyone who was in debt, and everyone who was bitter in soul, gathered to him .”    It seems that David’s betrayal drew others that identified with him and were feeling the effects of his betrayal and also perhaps their own personal distress.     (Sort of misery loves company but thankfully their King had a heart for God .)

    I confess that I skipped ahead this early morning and listened to the Paul Tripp message.   This is such a heartening message.  Just a few highlights from my notes:

    ~ Trial is war – How tempting it is to run from God in these moments –  to accuse God.

    These trials rescue us.  These trials call us back to once again put our identity in the Lord alone.   This is where the rubber meets the road.

    Perhaps worship is never more honest and true than in times of trial because in that moment I am not worshiping God because He has delivered what will make me happy –   I’m worshiping God because He’s God.

    This is a moment of deep grief for David, but interacting with that grief is something profound –  He is able to experience joy and that joy puts him to sleep.

    And in Paul Tripp’s brief prayer in closing he says,   “David’s heart was a harmony of grief and joy.   May we be people who run to You, Lord,”



  3. One last thing here this morning ~

    This Sara Groves  youtube video/song entitled Enough  incorporates Psalm 4:8.

    Some of the lyrics:

    These patches joy, these stretches of sorrow

    There’s enough for today, there’ll be enough tomorrow ~


  4. Oh Dee. The title alone had my eyes filled. You know how deep this hits my heart, such timely healing truths.


    Sara’s song–how it depicts David’s desperate, passionate seeking of the Lord. And these words: “…but it’s not going to happen like I thought it would happen. Remind me, remind me of the vision you gave me.” I feel much of that, especially when 5 months ago my vision of how I thought my family would, could, look was finally crumbled in a very public way. There was no more hiding the brokenness that the betrayal exposed, even if only on  a Sunday morning at church. But I sense these last few weeks, as He is healing my pain, He is reminding me of the greater vision that is so far beyond all I could ask for or imagine on my own. I have an indescribable, invaluable inheritance.The end of the song says “I can’t believe this is happening. How does a shepherd become a king?”, and in the same way, I think-how is it that I, am a heir and daughter of the King of Glory?

    And in His generous grace, He gives me tastes on my inheritance for today–as I sat with my head bowed in church this morning, praying before Communion with my hands in my lap, I felt the hand of my husband on my left join mine, and then the tender hand of my 12 year old son join mine on my right and my eyes couldn’t hold back the tears. I am rich. Today, and eternally. My only discontent comes when I forget that and try to make other things, lesser gods, my glory.

    Psalm 4–The theme that stands out to me is trusting in God.

    vs. 1, “You have given me relief when I was in distress.”-In my most painful of trials yet, that came to a head 5 months ago, He did bring relief in a very specific way as I have never before experienced in my own life. It was a bold and beyond my thoughts kind of rescue, directly from Him, and it is a marker for me now. He does hear my cries, and He does care for my soul.

    vs. 3, “But know that the Lord has set apart the godly for Himself; the Lord hears when I call to Him.”–thank You that I am Your child, You hear my voice among all others, I am special to You. I mattter.

    vs. 4-“Be angry,and do not sin”–Help me Lord, as I process through a situation now and deal with it tomorrow, may I honor You.

    vs. 7- “You have put more joy in my heart than they have when their grain and wine abound.”

    vs. 8 “In peace I will both lie down and sleep; for you alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety.”

    I had a terrible night 2 nights ago. I honestly never slept at all. I wish I could say I prayed, but I was riddled with anxiety and frustrated that I couldn’t sleep. Yet here, He reminds me why. I wasn’t trusting Him. I was upset about a problem at work that had the all too familiar feeling of wrongful accusations thrust at me. Lord, teach me to lay it down, over and over, and trust that You hear my call, You have set me apart for Yourself, You have brought me relief, and you will put joy in my heart. To the degree I let it soak into my head and heart, I can lie in peace, knowing You have already won my every battle.

    1. Hugs, Lizzy. You are in my prayers, dear friend.

    2. Lizzy, you are living here before us as “our David”….having experienced the anguish of unthinkable betrayal by one so close; I love how you personalized this Psalm. Love the picture of the three of you holding hands in church….I would’ve cried, too. Keeping you in prayer, with love.

  5. 1. What stands out to you from the above and why?

    Dee, I pray that God will strengthen you with His power this week and that He will be glorified in all you do. You have a very busy, intense week.


  6. 1.  What stood out….I am looking forward to the this week! It all sounds so good. Will for sure be in prayer for you, Dee. I posted on Sat eve (last week’s blog) about the answer to all of you in answer to your prayers for the evening with my boss. I can’t say enough about how I appreciate your prayers. So, as we pray for you this week, Dee, I expect even a better answer for you!



    1. Mary, I went back and read what you shared…no specific answer that we can see, but you were obedient, God knew your heart and just being a friend spoke volumes, I’m sure!


  7. Sunday:
    1.   What stands out to you from the above and why?
    Dee, praying for you this week-for strength and stamina, for a listening heart to hear what God wants you to share (I am sure you have so many nuggets of wisdom but which ones to share? J), anointing and favor, God-ordained encounters, safe flights and rest beyond measure as you prepare to do a video. And also for Ben.
    Sarah Groves is one of my all time favorite singers. Her lyrics are so powerful and the tempo of her songs is so unique. The pictures that came with the song spoke volumes of loneliness, despair and gut wrenching grief. I remember the physical revolt of my body in the past when  I have felt betrayed. Debilitating and all I can breathed out during those times were “help me, Lord!” It was hard to get up and face another day. But the Lord indeed was the one who sustained me.

  8. 1. What stands out to you from the above and why?


    The theme of betrayal – yes, many of you here have experienced it. I am thinking of how our Lord Jesus knows and understands what it is to be betrayed. And Dee, I will be praying for your time in Texas.

  9. This is so timely.  Feel like I’m totally forsaken.  Thank you for listening to the prompting of the Spirit to publish this blog at such a time as this.

    1. Miriam dear-prayers for you.

  10. 1. What stands out to you from the above and why?


    I know what this betrayal feels like. It is unbelievable that someone you love so much could/would want to purposefully harm you. It is so painful in your heart. You wonder why it must be this way? You wonder if God is teaching you a lesson at the expense of another? If so, you feel guilty for being taught the lesson and having no choice or control over the protection of a child. You know God is good but can’t believe it has to be this way; it seems cruel. I hope I learn a lot this week.

    1. 💓

  11. You will be in my prayers this week Dee.

  12. God’s blessings on this week ahead, Dee…may the Lord enlighten hearts and minds as you speak His words of love and truth, provide safe travels, and a give you the energy needed for all that this week brings. 🙏

  13. Sunday

    1.  What stood out to me was this line from the song…”I need to know you’re near me.  I need to know you’re holding me just as closely…”  I find myself saying throughout the day, “YOU ARE MY GOD” in response to hearing His sweet voice say, “you are my child.”  It’s a reminder of His presence, that He is near me, that He is holding me close!

    Dear Lord,  I lift up Dee to you throughout this week.  David spoke in Psalm 139:3-5,  “You see me when I travel and when I rest at home.  You know everything I do.  You know what I am going to say even before I say it Lord.  You go before me and follow me.  You place your hand of blessing on my head.”  I pray this over your precious servant Dee this week.  Amen

  14. I honestly don’t think you can be a human being in this world without experiencing betrayal at some point & level in your life.  More often than not, it’s with a family member.  And the knife goes deeper, because our feelings go deeper, because we love more.  After what I just went through last year with my daughter, the experience of her snipping me out of her life for what I thought would be a couple of weeks or months & turned into almost half the year, over something so stupid (she thought I said something that was shaming to our grandson, I still do not)….it just seems like we can’t get “back”.  Maybe it’s because the train derailed a long time ago & it’s really never gotten back on track.  It’s happened so many times that this latest incident, over the weekend, has me actually feeling rather numb to it all.  She wants to talk, & I’m just not ready, yet.  It was another one of those miscommunication things, where wires got crossed & plans went askew.  We were to spend the day with her & family, & instead, she ‘shoved’ us into a small lunch spot in her calendar & reserved the evening & night with friends instead.  So I’m standing in the middle of my kitchen with the prepared dinner I had planned to take for us… the delicious marinara/meat/spinach sauce bubbling away in my crockpot, big pretty tossed salad in the bowl ready to go, warm garlic bread & melt-in-your-mouth chocolate chip cookies for the kids fresh out of the oven, the 4-cheese frozen Ravioli ready to plop into the pot of boiling water on the stove…. and steam coming out of my ears, while holding the phone in my hand.  Really?  Again!?  We have been trying to get together, with summer schedules & them being gone almost the whole summer abroad on vacation…and it just doesn’t seem to work out.  I know I will connect with her at some point, but I’m doggone weary of it all.  I just never imagined that I would become like the troubled mother-daughter relationships in so many books I read.  Growing up, we were best friends.  Everything changed when she met & married her husband.  It suddenly became a whole lot of work & often not pleasant work to ‘be friends’.  And way too many times, it feels like betrayal, this my flesh & blood, someone I love with all my heart & soul.

    Praying for you this week Dee.  I love Sharon’s prayer above, so am going to pray that every day.  What a perfect verse you found Sharon.

  15. 2.  The main point of the Psalm is calling on God when so much, and so many, are against you.


    4.  In vs 1, David approaches God with a mix of boldness and pleading. He says that God is righteous and gives relief, that He is the Merciful One Who hears prayer, and that He is David’s God. The boldness shows as David basically demands that God respond to him when he says, “answer me when I call to You”.


    5.  David’s lament in verse 2 is that people dishonor God and rely on lies. David asks how long God will allow this to go on.


    6.  David knows for certain in vs three that God protects those who trust in Him, and that God will hear as David cries out to Him.

  16. 2. Read all of Psalm 4, and summarize the main point. 

    The main point is to trust in the Lord.

    3. Did any verse come alive to you? If so, meditate on it and share what you see.

    “Be angry, and do not sin; ponder in your own hearts on your beds, and be silent. Selah”

    ‭‭Psalms‬ ‭4:4‬ ‭ESV‬‬



    It is very hard to be angry and have self control (to not lash out and sin) and to breathe deeply. Yet this is what is expected; to reflect on our own sin and to not speak. To ask forgiveness and expect God to bless us. Boy do I need to practice this.


  17. The topic also stands out to me. Betrayal by one you love is the hardest feeling I have endured. And it catches me off guard when it rears its ugly head. I know that God never leaves me or forsakes me, yet the loneliness is very difficult to lose closeness to family and /or spouse.

    Dee, I am praying for the ministry in Texas and for the speaking on Wednesday. May God use you mightily as you give words of wisdom to each one.

  18. 4. Read Psalm 4:1 and share how David approaches God. 
    David is anxious for God to help him.

    5. What is David’s lament in verse 2? 
    David is upset for being shamed by those who are out to get him. His honor is being destroyed (reminds me of the ridiculous shenanigans going on in DC right now).

    6. What, does David know for certain about God in verse 3? 
    He knows God is with him.

    7. Compare this to 1 Peter 2:23. What parallel do you see? How do you see Jesus here as the “greater David?”
    Jesus is the one who is suffering because of those around Him. He is silently taking the punishment He does not deserve knowing God is with Him through it. This makes Him the “greater David” because He models the correct behavior of trusting God.


    8. How might you apply this when loved ones break your heart?

    Well, the first thing to remember is that God is near. He hasn’t abandoned you. This is difficult to remember because we want to have things fixed in a timely fashion; in our time. We need to remember God has His time. Then, instead of fretting, we need to trust He is in control. Again, difficult when in the thick of earthly “stuff” being in your face 😩. Finally, knowing that Job never knew why his life took a beating, but in the end was blessed, helps me think that I too, will be blessed by God. Jesus was raised after His awful torture. He was glorified. All in all, prayer helps me keep focused when action is what I really want.


    1. Laura–so good “prayer helps me keep focused when action is what I really want”!

    1. Dee–so thankful for good flights. Lord, we praise and thank You for this opportunity You have again given Dee. May she be filled with words from You to speak truth and life into the precious souls so desperate for Your rescue.  Thank You for Your shield around Dee, thank You that You are her Protector. Please grant Your blessing on this time, and allow safe travels home when she is done. In Your Name we ask~

  19. 8.  When loved ones hurt me, it is important to trust God to be the one who rights all wrongs and not try to do it myself – not even with my words. I find it easy to be passive aggressive, where I tolerate something but then talk to others about how I am being wronged and what the other has done poorly. That is basically gossip and character assassination. The other thing I have found helpful is to remember how much I have hurt God since coming to Him, and how gracious He is to forgive me, regardless of whether I seek His forgiveness or not. There are still consequences, but they are just and not vindictive.


    9.  David talks truth to himself, telling himself not to sin but to stay with God.

  20. 2. Read all of Psalm 4, and summarize the main point.


    What we need in desperate situations is His presence. Keep crying out to Him, even when everything around you says it’s no use. Remind yourself that you have been set apart by Him and so He will hear you. As you keep trusting, He will give you His peace.


    3. Did any verse come alive to you?


    I did listen to Paul Tripp’s sermon while following along in the psalm. I think verse 3, “Know that the Lord has set apart the godly for Himself” is kind of the key to this psalm. It seems to be the point of turning for David, for getting his eyes off his circumstances and back onto God.

    Also, when David interjects what seems to be a sort of interlude in verse 4, about being angry but not sinning, it reminded me of when Saul was pursuing David, which could have made him angry as he had not wronged Saul in any way. He had the chance to kill Saul, getting so close to him as to cut off a piece of his robe. David’s men even encouraged him to kill Saul, but David feared sinning against God more than getting revenge.

  21. 4. Read Psalm 4:1 and share how David approaches God.


    It seems to me in this verse that David isn’t hearing from God. He is persistent with his requests: answer me, give me relief, be merciful to me, hear my prayer. There have been times when I’ve called someone because I really need to talk and the phone is ringing and ringing, and I’m thinking, come on, answer!


    5. What is David’s lament in verse 2?


    How long is this going to go on? People that were loyal to him in the past are believing lies. He has lost the glory he once had as king.


    6. What, does David know for certain about God in verse 3?


    It is God who set David apart. It wasn’t a dream – God really did choose him from among all his brothers to be the king. His relationship with God is real. This verse seems to be the turning point, from questioning is God really listening, to because I know that God has me, I know that He will hear when I call to Him. Like Paul says in Romans, there is nothing that can separate us from the love of God.


    7. Compare this to 1 Peter 2:23. What parallel do you see? How do you see Jesus here as the “greater David”?


    David didn’t spend his time retaliating against his enemies. He entrusted himself and his situation to God. Jesus also didn’t retaliate against His enemies, but He entrusted Himself to the Father who judges justly. Jesus would be the “greater David” because He was without sin and modeled trust in the Father perfectly.


    8. How might you apply this when loved ones break your heart?


    Loved ones have hurt my feelings, made me feel rejected, insulted, belittled, and unloved. I don’t think I can truly say that I have ever been so severely betrayed as to feel utterly heartbroken. Usually I receive an apology. But, I remember something Tim Keller said about the degree of pain that you feel may reveal that you have put your trust in something/someone other than God. It is good to remind myself that I am set apart for God, and He is the One who is my true comfort, security, and approval. But, what Keller said is easier said than done. Even “little betrayals” sting and hurt, when I feel that my love is not returned in kind. Paul Tripp mentioned in his sermon the very real and terrible pain David felt when Absalom was killed. He didn’t feel exonerated at last; he was a father grieving the loss of his son. His kingship was restored at a terrible price. I think I remember reading that some people were mad at David because of his reaction.

    1. Susan, the thought from Keller is as you have said easier said than done. It wasn’t a loved one but a colleague at work for me today. He likes to make fun of me “playfully”. For the most part, I just take it in good stride. But then today, it started to get old. “the degree of pain that you feel may reveal that you have put your trust in something/someone other than God.” For me, it was the idol of approval rearing its ugly head. I had to remind myself as well where my security/approval truly  lies. Thanks for sharing.

  22. I receive Paul Tripp’s email newsletter and today’s is really timely for this lesson, I wanted to share an excerpt:

    “You never come to your suffering empty-handed. You always drag a bag full of experiences, expectations, assumptions, perspectives, desires, intentions, and decisions into your suffering. What you think about yourself, life, God, and others will profoundly affect the way you interact with and respond to the difficulty that comes your way.

    This is why the writer of Proverbs says: “Keep your heart with all vigilance, for from it flow the springs of life.” (Proverbs 4:23)

    What are you carrying around in your soul that has the potential to complicate your suffering? What are you preaching to yourself that could allow you to forget the truths of the gospel?

    Never forget: No matter what painful thing you’re enduring, as God’s child, it’s impossible for you to endure it all by yourself.

    The One who created this world and rules it with wisdom, righteousness, and love is in you, with you, and for you, and nothing has the power to separate you from his love.”

    1. I love Paul Tripp. He is so wise. God is in me…in us.

  23. Monday: Answer me when I call
    1.   Read all of Psalm 4, and summarize the main point.
    In the midst of betrayal, loneliness and feelings of being forsaken, I can remind myself of who God is and whose I am. I can have His peace.

    3. Did any verse come alive to you? If so, meditate on it and share what you see.
    v.1 It is OK to ask for relief

    v.2-3 It is OK to ask questions to God

    v.4 It is OK to be silent before God.

    v.4b We sang the praise song thank you and the the last verse said the very same thing:

    Jesus, Jesus

    To your name we will give all the glory

    To your name we give you all praise

    You’re alive our God everlasting

    Let your face shine on us.

    v.7 I can be happy for the good fortune of others in the midst of my suffering.

    v. 8 My circumstances do not bring about a feeling of safety; it is the Lord who brings it about.

  24. I’m having a hard time getting my responses to post this week. I will persevere.
    1. What stands out to you from the above and why? – Dee, I love your obedience to the Lord’s leading. This is so timely. My stepson has not spoken to us in over a year and that includes not seeing our grandson. We are not real sure what we have done, but I know this hurts my husband. From what we know we weren’t available one time when they asked us to do something. Funny I don’t even remember them asking. But from your post I can see that the one I need is Christ. I need to focus on that and He will see me through this time of betrayal. I also loved the song from Sarah Groves and especially the clip that says “sometimes when you’re in a dark place you think you’ve been buried, but actually you’ve been planted.”-Christine Caine

  25. Monday: Answer me when I call
    2. Read all of Psalm 4, and summarize the main point. – What I see here in Psalm 4 is that, things are being said about David that are not true and he is telling them to seek their hearts for the truth and God will lift him up and clear his name.
    3. Did any verse come alive to you? If so, meditate on it and share what you see. – The verse I like the best is 7; You have filled my heart with greater joy than when their grain and new wine abound. – This reminds me that I need to focus on the One True Joy. Others will fail me no matter how great their gifts may appear, but the Lord will not. He will be there and lead me to peace as it says in verse 8.

  26. Tuesday: O My Righteous God!
    4. Read Psalm 4:1 and share how David approaches God. – David appears to be a bit frustrated and the tone has some anger in it but he’s crying out to the Lord.
    5. What is David’s lament in verse 2? – That the men are seeking out false gods and believing what is being said about David even though it is not true
    6. What, does David know for certain about God in verse 3? – That God has set the godly aside from himself and that the Lord will hear him when he calls to him.
    7. Compare this to 1 Peter 2:23. What parallel do you see? How do you see Jesus here as the “greater David?” – That lies were being said about Jesus that were not true. Jesus didn’t say anything back to them, but left it up to the Lord to bring the truth out.
    8. How might you apply this when loved ones break your heart? – I need to remember that they most likely do not have a relationship with the Lord since they are talking falsely about me and my husband and justice will come to me when it is needed by the One that can deliver them from themselves.

  27. 9. What does David tell his soul in verses 4 and 5? – That he should not lash out at them, he needs to have a pure heart in order to offer up right sacrifices to the Lord and he needs to trust the Lord to handle his life and the situation he is in.
    10. If you are in a situation like this right now, do this, and see what HIs Spirit tells you. (You don’t need to share unless you choose to!) – Searching my heart, soul and mind on this one.

  28. 11. As you contemplate Psalm 4:7, what do you see, and how will you apply it? – This was the verse I picked as “the favorite”. I need to turn my eyes upward, to the only one that can and will be there for me. The Lord is faithful and true to see me through these troubled times.
    12. Psalm 4 is an evening psalm, next week we will look at Psalm 5, a morning psalm. In Psalm 4:6-8, what does David know to be true about God that will help him sleep in such frightening circumstances? – He knows that God is the only one that can protect him and keep him safe. He will let no harm come to him and give him a sweet peaceful sleep.
    13. How could you apply this psalm now or be ready to apply it when the need arises? – I need to cry out to God, ask for his protection in my life and to bring me peace that passes all understanding. I need to let God wrap me in his arms like a cocoon so his glory will be seen.

  29. Tuesday: O My Righteous God!
    1.   Read Psalm 4:1 and share how David approaches God.
    He approached God with boldness and urgency.
    2.   What is David’s lament in verse 2?
    He is lamenting the length of time others are seeking for his downfall.
    3.   What, does David know for certain about God in verse 3?
    God will answer his prayers for deliverance. David believed that he was set apart by God and therefore will preserve him.
    4.   Compare this to 1 Peter 2:23. What parallel do you see? How do you see Jesus here as the “greater David?”
    David and Jesus were both insulted and treated wrongly.
    They were both vindicated through the restoration of their throne.
    Jesus is the greater David because whereas David sinned, Jesus did not.
    Jesus is the greater David because whereas David’s throne was temporary and earthly, Jesus is permanent and heavenly.
    5.   How might you apply this when loved ones break your heart?
    That I can entrust myself to a faithful God who will be my shield and my protector. Who will be my comfort and who will love me no matter what.

    11. As you contemplate Psalm 4:7, what do you see, and how will you apply it?

    Let me preface this post by saying that I hate to be a downer but I also can’t put a Pollyanna face on this morning….if you prefer to face the morning in a more positive light don’t read this post, or wait until tonight to read. That is my disclaimer.



    Right now, I do not have joy in my heart with God. My situation with my daughter is at an all time low with no hope of any changes occurring any time soon. It is difficult to say that God has put joy in my heart, and hard to remember the times He has done so in the past. I am becoming hopeless. I am sad that He doesn’t seem to care. Not only do I feel betrayed by her, but I am beginning to think I am betrayed by Him too. I am hanging on by a thread right now. I don’t know how to change my situation but to take control of it myself, and yet I know if I do that it won’t be pretty. So I sit, helpless, watching my daughter potentially die (I am not exaggerating – her health is now affected by her choices), while God does seemingly nothing to assist me or her. I watch as my entire family is affected by her choices; we are a sad bunch.  Right now, I am sure that eating, shopping online, drinking wine, and not exercising are more joyful than verses from scripture, although I will try not to do all those things, and pretend that God is more joyful. I am sad. Please God change these things in my life and in my daughter’s life. I love you both. 


    12. Psalm 4 is an evening psalm, next week we will look at Psalm 5, a morning psalm. In Psalm 4:6-8, what does David know to be true about God that will help him sleep in such frightening circumstances?

    He feels that God will protect him no matter what.


    1. Laura–stopping to pray again for you right now. No words to offer, just prayer, and I’m so sorry.

    2. Oh Laura, I’m so sorry for these struggles. I think of you often and will be praying hard for you and your family. Love to you roommate.

    3. Laura, please do not give up, don’t listen to the lies of the enemy.  I love you & am praying for you today.  I always so appreciate you never wearing a mask, & sharing your heart, just as it is.  Thank you for being vulnerable, & letting us know how we can pray for you.  You are precious, and you are loved.

    4. Like Moses during battle, you may have gotten weary, but your sisters here are holding your arms up in prayer, believing God has a victory here for you. It may not be the one you envision, but it will be the one He intended. Love you, Laura.

    5. Hugs and prayers Laura!!

  31. 11.  Verse 7 shows that there is a breadth to God’s mercy. He is not just a tiny way station; He is the infinite! He is greater than any corporeal reward we could have. To apply, I need to meditate on His grace and mercy, allowing Him to shine out of my life.


    12.  David knows that in God’s presence there is light, joy, peace and safety. He knows that God is using every experience for blessing, and that he can totally trust in God.

  32. Notes on Paul David Tripp

    Trial is a war on our soul. Whether the trial is small or large is beside the point. In Ps 4, we see David do things we generally don’t do.

    1.  Rather than running to anything else, David runs to God. David realizes the only hope for this impossible situation that cannot end well, is in God.  Where do I run when I face trials?

    2.  David reminds himself of his identity in God. We have a tendency to forget who’s we are and what we have in Him. Are trials so hard for us because we have put our identity elsewhere? You are in danger when you have done that. God may allow trials because they expose where we’ve moved our identity to, and they call us back to God.

    3.  David examines his heart. Vs 4; are you angry in any way? No matter where or how you express it, it is really with God. David chooses to search himself both for anger and for complaining, and instead staying silent about it.

    4.  David turns his heart towards worship. Very hard to do. But we are never more honest and faithful in worship than in trials. Here we worship, not because God has been so good to us, but, purely for who He is.

    5.  David ministers to others, praying for them. No platitudes are given. In trials it isn’t easy to see God, but that is who we need to see. So David prays for God’s face to shine on them and give His presence to them. We usually think that we could see God in it if we could understand, but abiding peace doesn’t come from understanding. It comes from the person of God. This side of heaven we rarely really get to understand, but we always have Him with us.

    6.  David comes to a place of joyful rest. How was he able to do this in his grief and impossible situation? As David went through these steps, each one highlighted that God alone gives safety.

    David is a man just like us, capable of great sin. The Psalm is a narrative of what is possible for any child of God in trial. David understood that the attack against him and his throne was also an attack against God. God’s honor was involved, because He had chosen David. God’s honor is also at stake in our trials, because He has chosen us and we bear His name. And there is another King whose throne was threatened, and whose people rebelled against Him. But that King died and went to a different cave. This one a tomb. He didn’t stay there. He conquered it all so that you could have the grace you need in any trial. Because of Jesus, we also can say that He has filled our hearts with joy and allowed us rest and safety.

    I especially resonated with number 5, and the part about understanding in trial, and how what we need more is His presence. God protected His honor with David, with Jesus, and we can trust that as we look to Him, He will also protect it with us.

  33. Thank you dear sisters for your prayers and holding me up when I need it; you are kind, wise women and sometimes I don’t think I can make it but there you are, in the mire with me.


    Another challenge, similar to Bing’s school incident has reared its ugly head this week and for three days I am struggling to defend myself and my teaching practices. I want to defend myself because I am being attacked, but a good friend and colleague said I should take it to my boss and not “go there” after a couple of emails had already transpired. I am sad. For my student and for my not being able to see their side, just my own right now. So many misunderstandings about the situation and I would like the truth to come out. My boss doesn’t want a face to face meeting yet. I have the entire long weekend to wonder about it. I pray God will defend me as He has over and over for those who love Him. I think of Jesus; He didn’t defend Himself He allowed the people to do what “had to be done.” But then, He was  sent here for that reason. I am human. I feel as if I’ve been wronged. I’m trying to remember all the lessons I’m I have learned here. Thank you Dee for being such a wonderful teacher. I hope your week planned out the way you wanted (especially the technology!).

  34. Laura, my dear sweet friend. You and I seem to be often in the same wavelength-struggles with our daughters, challenges in our teaching jobs, people maligning us or making the road of difficult.  Can we both say, You are my God as we hear Him say, you are my people? though how faintly the sound  may be? You and the other ladies here have seen me through a difficult road last school year and occasionally it still haunts me as I go about my teaching. As I get more privy to the “political” side of the school system, I ache not only for myself but especially for the students. It is a mystery to me. Let us both go back to the truth of God’s Word no matter how we feel. I love you, dear sister. Let us commit our destiny to the One True God.

  35. While I have a little chunk of time this afternoon, I sat down to re-read this week’s comments.  A lot of things are rolling around in my head.  I believe there is a lot more all of us could say here this week, things that are not being said, some of which may just be too painful to write or talk about.

    But after reading Laura’s last post, Dee’s comment on the intense spiritual warfare, and Bing’s reply, my heart feels heavy.  Heavy with the way this world is, has become.  The charged atmosphere in our country over anything & everything political, the me-too movement, women vs. men, the way the far left keeps demanding to move the goalposts in effort to win, hatred & hostility that has trickled down into the corners & cracks of all walks of life & remotest of areas, the monstrous spiritual battles we fight & struggle against almost on a daily basis.  From the beginning of time, the enemy has made sure the battle has continued, and over the centuries I’m certain people felt far more oppression, hostility & spiritual warfare than we do today.  There are many days I feel that surely the end times cannot be far away…how much more, how much longer can God allow this to continue?  I watched a documentary on TV one night not long ago & was shocked when the band leader stood up, reciting the Lord’s Prayer in a very debased, mocking sort of way (the audience laughing & cheering).  I felt horrified and hit the mute button, my ears refusing to listen.  How low can we go?  I could cry just thinking of it.

    This verse comes to me now.  “….greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world…”  (1 John 4:4)  I know God wants me, wants us all to keep the faith, stand strong, keep our eyes focused on Him.  Not easy with all that’s happening around us, every day.  But with Him, all things are possible.   In my devotions last night, I noted this phrase repeated over & over again in the Psalms I was reading, & I think it’s the best way to wrap up my thoughts here, b/c I seem at a loss for more words right now…

    “Why am I discouraged?  Why is my heart so sad?  I will put my hope in God!  I will praise him again—my Savior & my God!”       (Psa 42 & Psa 43)



  36. 15. What is your take-a-way and why? From Paul Tripp that your worship is never more real or true than when you’re worshiping God in the midst of your trials and at your hardest moments, because it is then that you are worshiping Him because he is God, not because He has given you what you want.


  37. Here are my notes from Dr. Tripp’s sermon on Psalm 4. WOW

    Trial is war! Do we run from God or to him when in a trial? Do we doubt God in the midst of a trial?
    Where does your heart run, when trouble comes? We forget our identity. We forget whose child we are. We are the children of the God most high.
    Trials challenge us to look away from the things that we place our identity in. It should be in the Lord.
    We are his set apart and he will never turn away from us.
    It is easy in moments of trials to not pay attention of what is going on in our hearts.
    If you are angry in middle of trial and claim you believe in a sovereign God, your anger is with God.
    Anger results in another sin, ungodly communication. You don’t hurt people with your silence
    When you are in difficulty do you want to worship? Worship in times of trials is true worship because we worship God because he is God.
    Trials can block our vision to see the Lord that he is still with us. Prayer is essential.
    Lasting, abiding, sturdy, peace, is not to be found in understanding, lasting, abiding, sturdy, peace is found in a person and his name is Jehovah.
    You can find joy in a trial when you run to God know he is with you in the midst of the trial.
    Psalm 4 points back to another King who ended up in a cave, a tomb and the King is Jesus who faced death for us.

  38. Dee, I’m grateful for you and your Godly heart. This was a very timely blog for me. You truly are a blessing in our lives. I’m glad your trip was successful and your travels were all good. Thank you for your teachings and listening to the Lord’s leading.