For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope. Romans
Comments, thoughts and reflections welcome.
Hear me when I call, O God of my righteousness!
You have relieved me in my distress;
Have mercy on me, and hear my prayer.
How long, O you sons of men,
Will you turn my glory to shame?
How long will you love worthlessness
And seek falsehood? Selah
But know that the LORD has set apart for Himself him who is godly;
The LORD will hear when I call to Him.
Be angry, and do not sin.
Meditate within your heart on your bed, and be still. Selah
Offer the sacrifices of righteousness,
And put your trust in the LORD.
There are many who say,
“Who will show us any good?”
LORD, lift up the light of Your countenance upon us.
You have put gladness in my heart,
More than in the season that their grain and wine increased.
I will both lie down in peace, and sleep;
For You alone, O LORD, make me dwell in safety.
What do we learn of God? He protects. He is righteous. He gives relief and mercy. He can be trusted. This prayer gives him respect and honor. It ells us who he is and what he does. It pins down our personal flaws and urges us to give them up or correct them. It states an existence of rest and peace with recognition of who grants such.
Do we experience distress? Do we seek truth in falsehood? Do we love what will fail and crumble? Do we let our anger dictate our actions? The Lord can relieve the distress and grant mercy from that which distresses us. Where do we turn? Do we turn to Him?
“…You have relieved me in my distress;
Have mercy on me, and hear my prayer…..”
Where have we set our priorities and our true affections? Is it to acquire much?
“…How long will you love worthlessness
And seek falsehood? …”
Where do we go for information and guidance? Is it in the accomplishments of mankind, or humanity’s philosophy?
When we experience anger what is our response? The prayer directs us to meditate rather than act. Can we find it within us to not deny the anger but neither to allow the anger to direct our actions? This one ability alone would stop all the killing of the harmless and innocent that we have watched recently in our nation. What do we teach our children? To squelch the anger? Or to:
“…Be angry, and do not sin.
Meditate within your heart on your bed, and be still. …”
There’s more…offering the sacrifices of righteousness implies we give up that which we want to do with that anger driving us, as a sacrifice to the Lord and burn it up. It is offered to Him and He takes action for us in His wisdom. Where is our trust? Is it truly in Him or have we picked up the sword of anger and caused harm?
“…Offer the sacrifices of righteousness,
And put your trust in the LORD….”
When we put our trust in Him to protect, grant mercy and act for us we can rest in peace. There is nothing left for us to do except rest in Him. Therefore the psalmist states “…You have put gladness in my heart,…” We can join with the psalmist and say “You, Lord, have given us joy.”