Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Psalm 8

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Creation. Oh, how marvelous is God's creation. How often do we stop to just consider the wonder of it all? That's what David does in this Psalm. He reminds us of the wonder of God's creation.

In today's world, we find many who would argue that it's all the product of random chance. I don't know about you, but as I look at the world around me, the sky, the trees, the animals, I just can't believe that randomness could produce such wonder. When I take things and throw them randomly, it just looks like a mess.

Paul tell us in Romans that the very creation around us screams of God and His majesty. When you hear a bird sing, see the mountains rise above the plains, or feel the wind blow gently across you brow, you stop to think about the God who created it all. How big He must be. Yet, He chose us, as David reminds us, to be crowned with more glory than all creation. What love!

Of all God's creation, we are special in His eyes. Over every creature, over every angel, we are the ones He longs to be with. We are special, in a world of special. Wonder at it, but marvel at it. Give thanks to the God of the universe, creator of all things, for He has made you special and loves you above all.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Psalm 7

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We live in a fallen world. Look at the news and see the wickedness around us. Sometimes it feels as though it's just too much to bear. Then, in the midst of all this, there are those who come against us for no reason at all.

It's at these times when we must remember there are some enemies that only God can dispatch. David in this Psalm calls out to God for deliverance, knowing that only God can save him. Thank God, we have Him as a deliverer.

As God's people, we are supposed to do all we can to treat others fairly, to live upright lives. Generally, this will make us respected with those around us. An employer favors an employee he can trust, one who never steals or cheats. A teacher will honor a student who studies hard and avoids trouble. A friend will give all for a friend who is selfless. Generally.

There are those times, though, that no matter how much we walk in integrity, there are those who are out to destroy us. There's the co-worker who is not willing to work as hard as us, yet wants to get further ahead than us. There is the fellow student who views our diligence as threatening to their grades. There are those jealous of our friendships and they want to destroy them so they feel better about their loneliness.

It's at these times we are to call on God. God will then take up our cause and fight for us. Who better to have fighting for us than God?!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Psalm 6

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We all make mistakes. We all will sin against God at some time or another. Of that, there is no doubt. The big question is how will we react when it happens.

From this Psalm, we see a clear picture of how David responded when he sinned. He was quick to repent, he completely removed himself from the situation, and believed fully in God to restore him.

David is referred to as "a man after God's own heart." Yet, we see stories of some pretty bad stuff which he was responsible for. So, how can that be? Does that mean God's heart is to sin? Absolutely, not! David was quick to repent. He had a soft heart and wanted to please God. He knew he couldn't do that if he allowed unrepented sin to remain in his heart and life. So, as soon as his folly became known to himself, he would ask God to forgive him.

Next, he would do what ever he could to remove himself from the situation. If it was bad advice he was getting, he removed the people from his council. If he was in a bad situation, he went where it would not tempt him. He allowed God's Spirit to direct him by taking himself away from the very thing which displeased God.

Finally, he allowed God to do His work in his life. He didn't take God's grace for granted, but understood God's love and desire to help and to heal us. He didn't allow himself to be brought down by past sins. He understood the forgiveness God had given him, and he walked in it's power.

So, let's all take that advice. Let's not allow unrepented sin to fester in our lives and choke out the grace of God.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Psalm 5

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Ever have those days where you just don't know what to do in a situation? Of course you do. We all do. It just happens more often for some than others. There are those situations, though, that no matter how much effort and mind power we put into things, they are just beyond our grasp of understanding.

Enter prayer. God has promised that He will guide those who love Him. Those who follow Him and obey His commands, He will give divine wisdom to in those times. All we need to do is ask.

Jesus, who often went to God in prayer for guidance, told us that since earthly fathers know how to give good gifts to their children, God is more willing to give knowledge to His children when they ask. It's that simple.

The awesome thing is that we know that as we ask, we are assured He is listening and willing to answer our requests. We can go to Him in prayer joyfully, expecting that special wisdom we need in those difficult times. The unsaved don't have any such assurances.

So, let's not let those problems get us down or steal too much of our time, just carry them to God, lay them at His feet, and expect that He will give you the answer you need, just when you need it.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Psalm 4

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We all have those rough days. We have those days when it feel like the whole world is against us. We feel that we can do no right in the sight of those around us. Friends, co-workers, family members all seem to have it out for us. Yet, we feel that we have done nothing to deserve it.

In those times we call out to God to lift us up. And he does. He is there to comfort and hold us. He is there to protect us and give us peace. We know we belong to Him and He cares for us.

We do our very best to live uprightly and proper before all men. We understand, though, that the ways of God are higher than the ways of man, so sometimes our right living makes other feel uncomfortable. It is those times when they rise up and try to bring us down to their level, that level of feeling slightly uncomfortable in the presence of God. We know, though, that we are to please God, not man.

We can rest, then, in the assurance that we are not looking at our surroundings for our peace. We are looking to God and feeling His smile on us. For that, we can lie down and sleep in peace. Our hearts will be glad, because God loves us.

Monday, March 3, 2008

Psalm 3

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David was no stranger to trouble. He was always fleeing from someone, it seems. One of the people he fled from was his son, Absalom. I'm sure it would be quite depressing to have to flee from your own son, and could give you reason to give up the fight.

When David wrote this Psalm, he was doing just that, running from Absalom. He spent time hiding in caves and praying to God. We know that David prayed for deliverance and that his son would be restored to him. Unfortunately, this was not the case, as he was eventually killed by one of David's generals.

The thing to note in these passages is that David realized that God would answer his prayers and rescue him. He seems to have no doubt. This Psalm is his prayer and his declaration of that. It serves as a good example of a prayer of faith.

David calls out to God to help him with his enemies. He remarks how they have grown. He tells God how strong they are. He even mentions how they have mocked God and himself. Many times our enemies get very bold, especially if God has a purpose for delaying His answer. This is seen in Scripture quite a few times, not the least of which when Jesus hung on the Cross. But, God is not slack concerneing His promises.

David then encourages himself by reminding himself that God is his shield and salvation. He remembers that God had destroyed his enemies before and that he had promised to do it again. This brought him the peace he needed to get rest and awake refreshed. We, too, can lay down at night, knowing that God is in control and on our side.

Though this is a short prayer, it is effective. Not only did it show his reliance on God, but is served to encourage himself. Sometimes we need to do that. We need to encourage ourselves when times get tough. It's not so hard when things are going our way. It's when things get tough that we need to call out to God in perfect assurance and dependence.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Psalm 2

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It's easy to feel that the world is against us. We read in the news of the battles over things such as prayer in school, public displays of everything from the 10 Commandments to a nativity, and shootings at churches. Actually, things have not really changed in over 4000 years.

Whether it was the days of King David or Jesus, there have been those in power who raised up against God's people. They have tried to destroy them and stop their message. Why should we expect anything different today?

Whoever it is that threatens us, and whatever they threaten us with, we know one thing; God is still God and He is on His throne. No matter what comes of us, no matter what is threatened, God is in control and His will is going to come to pass. No matter how strong the rulers of this world think they are, no matter how much power they think they wield, God will have the final say. God will judge the world, both the just and unjust.

We can, therefore, take great comfort in God. As long as we are His, we have nothing to fear.