Wednesday, February 15, 2012

37 Days Left -- Psalms 37

Wow! Today's passage is AMAZING! I swear, I love the Bible so much. I have read through the entire Bible once & many of the passages hundreds of times and yet, I can discover parts as if I am reading it for the first time. 

On with it...

Psalms 37

 1 Fret not yourself because of evildoers;
   be not envious of wrongdoers!
2 For they will soon fade like the grass
   and wither like the green herb.

 3 Trust in the LORD, and do good;
   dwell in the land and befriend faithfulness.[b]
4 Delight yourself in the LORD,
   and he will give you the desires of your heart.

 5 Commit your way to the LORD;
   trust in him, and he will act.
6 He will bring forth your righteousness as the light,
   and your justice as the noonday.

 7 Be still before the LORD and wait patiently for him;
   fret not yourself over the one who prospers in his way,
   over the man who carries out evil devices!

 8 Refrain from anger, and forsake wrath!
   Fret not yourself; it tends only to evil.
9 For the evildoers shall be cut off,
   but those who wait for the LORD shall inherit the land.

 10 In just a little while, the wicked will be no more;
   though you look carefully at his place, he will not be there.
11 But the meek shall inherit the land
   and delight themselves in abundant peace.
There is so much here, I don't know where to start. 

It is so hard not to care what others think of us. You can hear 100 positive comments, affirmations, encouragements directed at you and one negative or cruel remark & that one will be what keeps you up at night.

As Christians, we must retrain our spirit, our emotion, our natural tendency, our mentality to not be driving by praise from the world but from serving the Lord God. That is what it means to "delight yourself in the Lord." I use to think that meant, to be happy with the thought of God. It was a little disturbing to me because, when I thought of God, I got more of an irritation/annoyance feeling rather that a feeling of joy. Like He was always trying to interrupt my plans, didn't really care about what I wanted, just wanted to rain on my plans. I just didn't understand that verse. I thought that I must not be getting what I want out of life because I don't go into this state of peaceful joy when contemplating the Lord. I just really didn't understand. 

What that verse means is once you get to the point in your relationship with Christ that you where serving the Lord, doing His will is a joyful duty (not necessarily a happy or easy task), He begins to "give you the pleasures of your heart." That "pleasures of your heart" bit has nothing to do with Him fulfilling your ever desire, want, or dream. What it does mean is that He starts to mould your desires to fit in His. He starts to change your plans, old dreams start to fade while new ones come to life. I use to HATE writing & public speaking was a nightmare for me. Now, I dream of writing Bible study/small group literature & speaking at women's/young ladies' conferences. I'm not sure if those will ever fully come to fruition, but I'm praying that if they are what God would have me to do that he open the doors for me.

Verse 6 reminds me of Matthew 5:14-16 where Jesus is describing how we are to be a shining city on a hill, a light that should not be hidden, where we get the song "This Little Light of Mine." We can only pray that we never do anything to dim the light of Jesus in our lives. We want to live as though it would be clear to everyone else that there is something extra special in our lives.

It seems so often that those who don't live upright lives, who don't do good always seem to be the ones that come out on top. There are reasons for those famous sayings, "Damned if you do, damned of you don't." or "No good deed goes unpunished." They sound so bitter & cynical but at times seem so true. But here, David tells us not to worry ourselves over this seeming injustice for their time is coming. This may be the closest some people will ever get to Heaven, why should I be envious of them. One day, Christ will return & those who did not choose to follow Christ will be sent to Hell (Rev 20:15) & those who do choose Christ will "inherit the land."

"Abundant peace." Doesn't that sound wonderful? There is a peace that comes over a person despite what they are experiencing at the moment, despite any persecution they may be receiving that "passes all understanding" (Philippians 4:7) and that comes from God when you are walking in His path.

12 The wicked plots against the righteous
   and gnashes his teeth at him,
13 but the Lord laughs at the wicked,
   for he sees that his day is coming.
 14 The wicked draw the sword and bend their bows
   to bring down the poor and needy,
   to slay those whose way is upright;
15 their sword shall enter their own heart,
   and their bows shall be broken.
 16 Better is the little that the righteous has
   than the abundance of many wicked.
17 For the arms of the wicked shall be broken,
   but the LORD upholds the righteous.
 18 The LORD knows the days of the blameless,
   and their heritage will remain forever;
19 they are not put to shame in evil times;
   in the days of famine they have abundance.
 20 But the wicked will perish;
   the enemies of the LORD are like the glory of the pastures;
   they vanish—like smoke they vanish away.
 21 The wicked borrows but does not pay back,
   but the righteous is generous and gives;
22 for those blessed by the LORD[c] shall inherit the land,
   but those cursed by him shall be cut off.

Psalms 14:1 says that "a fool says in his own heart 'There is no God.'" Many times when non-Christians oppose Christians so viciously, it has to do more with them dealing with their own guilt. God has written his law on the hearts of every man (Romans 2:14-15), we all know something is innately wrong within us. When an atheist or other non-believer sees us, it disturbs them & they must silence it, they must do something that will convince others that they are in the right & they can try to satisfy their guilt & silence God's call to their heart.
 23 The steps of a man are established by the LORD,
   when he delights in his way;
24 though he fall, he shall not be cast headlong,
   for the LORD upholds his hand.
 Again, here is another reference of when we are walking with the Lord, we will be happier & when we do fall...& we will, we are only human...He is there to prevent us from falling too far & to help us back up again.

25 I have been young, and now am old,
   yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken
   or his children begging for bread.
26 He is ever lending generously,
   and his children become a blessing.

 27 Turn away from evil and do good;
   so shall you dwell forever.
28 For the LORD loves justice;
   he will not forsake his saints.
They are preserved forever,
   but the children of the wicked shall be cut off.
29 The righteous shall inherit the land
   and dwell upon it forever.

 30 The mouth of the righteous utters wisdom,
   and his tongue speaks justice.
31 The law of his God is in his heart;
   his steps do not slip.

 32 The wicked watches for the righteous
   and seeks to put him to death.
33 The LORD will not abandon him to his power
   or let him be condemned when he is brought to trial.

 34 Wait for the LORD and keep his way,
   and he will exalt you to inherit the land;
   you will look on when the wicked are cut off.

 35 I have seen a wicked, ruthless man,
   spreading himself like a green laurel tree.[d]
36 But he passed away,[e] and behold, he was no more;
   though I sought him, he could not be found.

 37 Mark the blameless and behold the upright,
   for there is a future for the man of peace.
38 But transgressors shall be altogether destroyed;
   the future of the wicked shall be cut off.

 Verse 31 reminds me of Epehsians 6:13-17 where Paul is speaking of the "Armor of God" and also Psalm 119:11 that says, "I have stored up your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you."
 39 The salvation of the righteous is from the LORD;
   he is their stronghold in the time of trouble.
40 The LORD helps them and delivers them;
   he delivers them from the wicked and saves them,
   because they take refuge in him.
Once again the psalmist ends on such an encouraging tone, with verse 40 reminding me of Psalm 46:1, "God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble."

No comments:

Post a Comment