When I read about God being furious, angry, and powerful, I often feel really intimidated. It can be scary to think about how awesome and intense our God is. I prefer to think of Him as gentle and kind. But when I ignore the righteous anger and power of God, I miss out on a huge part of His love, the part of His love that is angry for us. Psalm 18 paints a beautiful picture of God’s furious love.

But in my distress I cried out to the Lord; yes, I prayed to my God for help. He heard me from his sanctuary; my cry to him reached his ears. Then the earth quaked and trembled. The foundations of the mountains shook; they quaked because of his anger. (verses 6-7)

Throughout the Psalms, David (the author of most of them) is on the run from His enemies and cries out to God to rescue him. Psalm 18 is David’s response to God delivering him from his enemies. When God responds to David’s predicament, He doesn’t just feel bad for David, He is angry for him. He essentially moves heaven and earth to get to him and leads him to a place of safety. I love how David describes God as having smoke pouring from His nostrils and shaking the earth because it shows just how passionate God is about us. Only a furious love would respond like that.

He led me to a place of safety; he rescued me because he delights in me. (verse 19)

God’s love for us is so powerful that He will do whatever it takes to get to us, even sacrificing His own son! It’s really easy to lean into the warm, fuzzy feeling that comes with God’s love, but that’s only the surface. When we understand that God is for us in every way, we get to lean into the passionate side of His love. God doesn’t just rescue David. He gives him a shield of victory and strength to keep going. That means that God doesn’t just pick us up, dust us off, and send us on our way. Rather, He equips us for every battle and promises us eternal victory.

God arms me with strength, and he makes my way perfect. He makes me as surefooted as a deer, enabling me to stand on mountain heights. (verses 32-33).

Spend time reflecting on the furious love of God, a love that will move heaven and earth to show you that you are loved and delighted in. Invite Him into your struggles because He sees your pain and wants to respond to it. Let the hope of eternal victory encourage you to keep pressing on as a beloved child of God.

Author | Emily Baker