Wednesday, February 22, 2012
Name them One by One
We studied Psalm 63 today in Ladie's class. It should come as no surprise to me that verse 5 stuck out to me. "My soul is satisfied as with marrow and fatness, And my mouth offers praises with joyful lips." I immediately thought of a picture like that above. And then my mind wandered onto a trail about what this verse is really telling me.
David wrote this Psalm while he was in the wilderness of Judah. He was either in his flight from Saul (1 Sam 23) , or even from Absalom his son tho betrayed him. (2Sam 15) During this trial, David records his praises to his God. He's experiencing great heartache and probably great fear, yet he praises God.
I learned a few things from this Psalm. First, I learned that David is praising God and being joyful in God's promises...yet there's not really any indication that he is HAPPY. Joy and happiness are two different things. While David is in the midst of a trial, he is joyful in God's promises, and in the big picture. Secondly, I realized that David was praising God BEFORE he knew the end result. He did not know the outcome of his relationship with his son or his king, yet he praised God anyway. He recognized that God's sovereign will was already in place and he chose to accept that. Thirdly, I kept coming back to that verse 5. God doesn't just give us good. He gives us His best. He, "satisfies us as with marrow and fatness..." I keep reading in Psalm that God's word will restore me! Psalm 19:7 says, "The law of the LORD is perfect, restoring the soul..." Here i've made time to run, or take a bath, or go out with the girls, or even on a date night with Ryan. My attempts at restoring my weary soul. Yet i'm so simply told that if I want to be restored, encouraged and satisfied, I should be filling my mind with the truth in God's Holy Word. That's where the good stuff is. That's the meat.
So how can I apply this practically? How can I make sure I'm recognizing His blessings to me and praise Him in good times and bad?
I see His hand in nature. He didn't have to give us clean rain or mountains or snow. He didn't have to allow the sun to rise every morning. He didn't have to make flowers smell good or thunder to sound so powerful. I see His hand in our country. We have freedoms here to worship Him as we choose. And really, we worship Him without much risk of danger. I have a congregation that loves the Lord and insists on obeying Him. My husband has steady work and an income that provides for our needs and wants. My children are little sinners that are already open to learning about the Lord, and have hearts open to the gospel. My children are healthy and strong. These blessings are all God's best for me. My last blessing is saved for last mention, not because of it's lesser value, but because of it's over-arching importance.
God has given me this incredible gift of salvation! Because my salvation is not of my own doing, "For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God; not as a result of works so that no one may boast." Eph 2:8-9 Since my salvation is not of my own doing, I have the security that there's nothing I can do to loose it! "My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me; and I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish: and no one will snaatch them out of My hand. My father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all: and no one is able to snatch them out ot the Father's hand. I and the Father are one." John 10:27-30
So interesting to me that while I started out thinking of prime rib and roast beef while reading Psalm 63, God helped make clear to me the message of the gospel! May I choose to find the joy even when I'm not happy. My salvation is secure in Christ. And that, my friends, is the real meat of my blessings.