Briefing: I had a high school counselor who helped me with college information. When a family is having problems, they sometimes turn to a marriage counselor. There are counselors for rehabilitation, mental health, substance abuse and education. Do we have a counselor for law enforcement?
Dispatch (Assignment): Read Psalm 16.
On the Street: David’s faith in God puts him in the zone even when he is having a bad day. We have seen in the Psalms that David has been working towards this kind of attitude for a while. He is living proof that even when things don’t always go our way we can still have confidence that God is going to work all things for our good.
In law enforcement we often find ourselves needing counsel. If we go to court we count on the counsel (prosecuting attorney) to do their job. When peace officers get major complaints or get sued we look to our police union or association to provide legal counsel. The criminal justice system depends heavily on counsel.
What kind of counsel do you get on the job? Who do you turn to when you face tough decisions? In verse 7 David says that God gives him counsel. Do you know that when Jesus was on earth, He told His disciples that He was going to go to be with His Father but He would send someone to help us? In John 14:16-17 Jesus said, “And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Counselor to be with you forever- The Spirit of truth.” Then later in John 14:26 Jesus told them, “But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.”
In our jobs, we are counted on to make major decisions every day. We make decisions that can impact someone’s future. Decisions to file charges on someone, to take peoples freedoms, to issue citations that cost hundreds of dollars, to take actions that are intended to prevent accidents and save lives. Think about the impact when a major crime is solved and the suspect is caught. We punish the wrong doer while protecting the rest of society from their evil deeds. By putting murderers, rapists, thieves and other menaces of society in jail we are protecting the people who choose to follow the law and obey the rules. These people may not understand or appreciate it but we make their lives safer and society more productive. Don’t ever forget that you work in a noble profession that keeps chaos and evil from destroying civilized society. This is a big job with big consequences. Who do you turn to when you have to make these big decisions?
David was arguably one of the greatest kings to ever rule on this earth. When I look to an earthly ruler for guidance and example, I turn to King David. He says that he relies on God for his counsel. David goes on to explain how this counsel guides him.
Verse 8 says, “I have set the LORD always before me. Because He is at my right hand, I will not be shaken.” This is the confidence to know that if you follow God and live righteously you will never find yourself looking over your shoulder. There will be no guilt or shame because you are forgiven. David’s focus was on God and he was rewarded for that choice.
In verse 11 David says, “You have made known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.” There are many paths life can take. Christians are called to take the path that follows God’s will. This path of life will show you truth. This path of life leads us to pray for godly wisdom. If we are going to rule over God’s people then we need His wisdom and discernment to make right decisions. We need God’s counsel.
Investigational Resources: Joshua 23:15, Matthew 19:16-30, Psalm 121:1-2, Acts 2:24-32, 1 Kings 3:7-9.
Officer Safety Principle: 24/7 counseling is only a decision away. It is one of the benefits that come with living a life according to God’s will.
from Psalms Through the Eyes of a Cop, Volume 1
©by Charles Gilliland. Used by permission.
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