Elul - and Beyond!By Rabbi Jack Abramowitz
David says that G-d is his light, so he has no one to fear. G-d is his source of strength, so no one can intimidate him. When evil people conspire to harm him, it is they who shall fall. David wouldn’t even fear an army because He trusts in G-d. He asks just one thing: to be able to sit in the Temple and bask in G-d’s glory for the rest of his life.
David expects that G-d will shelter him there in times of trouble. (This may refer to David’s descendant Yoash, who was concealed in the Temple in II Kings 11.) David holds his head high, above those of his enemies, who lower theirs in shame. David offers sacrifices and songs of praise to G-d.
Now David prays to G-d to hear his voice and answer him; G-d gave David the desire to seek Him. He hopes that G-d will allow David to “find” him and not turn him away. G-d has always taken care of David’s physical needs, so he prays that his spiritual needs will be met as well. Even though a person”s own parents might conceivably forsake him, G-d would never do that! So David asks G-d to show him the way and lead him on the proper path, which is sure to infuriate David’s enemies, who are just waiting for him to slip up. David hopes these enemies don’t get their wish!
There have been false people who tried to trip David up. Had he not had confidence that he would enjoy G-d’s goodness, he would have fallen for their lies. If a person puts his faith in G-d and strengthens himself, then G-d will encourage him. Therefore, let’s all place our trust in Him!
This is a very familiar Psalm, recited twice a day from the start of the month of Elul through the holiday of Succos. Verse 4 may be familiar as the song “Achas Sho’alti” (Shivti! Shivti! Shivti! Woo!)