“No one is concerned for me . . . no one cares for my life.”
These words from Psalm 142 are some of the saddest in all of scripture.
The heading of the Psalm helps us to understand the poem in context. David was running from Saul who was trying to kill him. Many saw David as a rebel leader, and a fugitive. Righteous people, not knowing the whole story, were not likely to support him. And so, everyone “in distress, or in debt, or discontented, gathered around him.” They looked on David as a savior. David looked on them as baggage. If they would rebel against the king, they would rebel against him. They were his army, but they were totally unreliable and cared for him only as long as he could provide resolution from their problems.
And so, surrounded by malcontents, David felt utterly alone. He turned to God, the only one he could truly trust and prays for deliverance. He knows, if God will grant him his request, he can have a different set of companions – the righteous.
Reputation is important. Reputation is not who we are. It is who people think we are, and what they think is important. When our reputation falters, no matter what the reason, our real friends are not those who support us and excuse us. Our real friends are always the righteous, and it is their acceptance and company we should seek. The only way to receive it, is through the company of God. We should seek Him first.