I recently bought a new bike. My road bike from 1997 wasn’t a good fit, literally, and the gears were giving me a bunch of grief. I’ll bypass the geeking out on groupsets and geometry and my conversation at the bike shop, but I ended up getting a new bike. The inventory just last week was sparse as it’s spring and demand is high–sizes and colors sold out within the state until the fall. The store was able to track one down for me in my size in the only color available: a gray upper and candy-apple red lower frame.
A teammate asked me what I named my bike (that’s a thing apparently!) and I told her Aegis, which means shield. (My daughter and I read The Iliad last fall, and delighted over literary embellishments like “aegis-bearing Zeus” and “swift-footed Achilles.”) I joked that the gray on the bike was a shield over the red of the blood of my enemies. A nearby teammate said, “Wow. I named my bike Starlight!” And we had a good laugh.
But the bike is just a bike, and the name is just a playful nod at this fleeting time with my kid.
My very real protection and shield is the very real God of the Bible over a very real adversarial force.
I will bless the Lord at all times;
his praise shall continually be in my mouth.
2 My soul makes its boast in the Lord;
let the humble hear and be glad.
3 Oh, magnify the Lord with me,
and let us exalt his name together!
4 I sought the Lord, and he answered me
and delivered me from all my fears.
5 Those who look to him are radiant,
and their faces shall never be ashamed.
6 This poor man cried, and the Lord heard him
and saved him out of all his troubles.
7 The angel of the Lord encamps
around those who fear him, and delivers them.
8 Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good!Psalm 34:1-8, ESV
Blessed is the man who takes refuge in him!
Contend, O Lord, with those who contend with me;Psalm 35:1-3, ESV
fight against those who fight against me!
2 Take hold of shield and buckler
and rise for my help!
3 Draw the spear and javelin
against my pursuers!
Say to my soul,
“I am your salvation!”
I call upon you, for you will answer me, O God;
incline your ear to me; hear my words.
7 Wondrously show your steadfast love,
O Savior of those who seek refuge
from their adversaries at your right hand.
8 Keep me as the apple of your eye;Psalm 17:6-9, ESV
hide me in the shadow of your wings,
9 from the wicked who do me violence,
my deadly enemies who surround me.
Lord, your word is a testimony of your love. I can trust in you because of who you are and what you’ve done. I can live in peace knowing that I’m loved and held by you, no matter what troubles come. I praise you because you are good, faithful, and true.