Psalm 19, 2018
Look up and see how awesome our God is!
The never-ending skies above us announce the power and the glory of our Ceator!
Everyday the skies teach me more about you, Father God. Night after night, they reveal your majesty. The skies don’t use words but their message stretches out over the whole earth. Everyone on this planet can know you, Creator God, just by looking up.
You command the sun to rise each day on one horizon and then circle above us until its sets on the other. People of all nations everywhere feel its warmth.
You reveal your truth to me in your Word and it refreshes my soul by bringing my thinking back in line with your’s. I can’t trust what people around me say but I can always trust what you say.
When I follow your guidance, God, you make me wise. Choosing to do what is right brings joy to my heart.
Your Word lights my path. I will love and respect you forever!
Your Word is my firm foundation. Thank you for teaching me what is right, Father. Your Word is more valuable than money and it proves that you only want the best for me.
You warn me of dangers ahead and your Spirit convicts my spirit when I have done something wrong. Forgive me, Father. Keep my eyes focused on you so I can avoid bad choices and the evil which presses in all around me.
Do you hear me, LORD? I need you to answer me.
I have faith and trust in you. Guard my life.
You are my God, please have mercy on me. I call to you all day long. I put my trust in you to bring joy back into my life.
LORD, you are always forgiving and good to all who call to you. Please hear me as I cry for mercy. You always answer me when I call to you in distress – I know you will answer this time as well.
There is no one or no thing like you. No one does what you do.
You have made all things and there will be a time when all things come to worship you, bringing you glory, LORD.
You are great and marvelous – you alone are God.
Teach me about your faithfulness, LORD, so that I may understand it. Give me a heart that is dedicated to you so I show respect for everything you are.
With my whole heart I praise you, LORD my God. I will praise you forever.
Your love for me is awesome! You have saved me from the darkness that is all around me. The lies of my culture try to attack my thinking, O God. Satan is working hard to snuff out your light in this world.
There are so many fools around me who have no regard for you.
But you, LORD, show your compassion and grace. You are so patient with us, so loving and always faithful. Show me your strength and mercy.
You have saved me and I serve you only, just as my mother did. Make your light shine in my life, LORD, so the lost ones around me can see you and know how you have helped me and comforted me.
I work hard.
I got the degree.
I put in the extra effort.
I save it and invest it well.
There are a lot of I’s in those statements, aren’t there? As James would say to us, “Don’t be deceived, my dear brother and sisters.”
The truth is – everything comes from God. God owns it all. My paycheck, my house, my car, my IRA – it’s all God’s and he has given it to me. Just like he has given whatever you have to you.
God provides for us. He gives us the ability to work for a living. He helps us grow our skills and knowledge. He gives us perseverance to get up every morning and the strength to complete our tasks for the day.
I love the visual I see in my head as I read 1 Chronicles 29. King David is standing in the middle of huge mounds of gold, silver and bronze. There are piles of precious stones all around him.
With his hands held high up to the sky, he praises God and says, “Everything in heaven and earth is your’s”.
It’s all God’s. Everything we have and are comes from God. I have the right perspective when I understand that I am totally dependent on God for everything. Until I get to that place, I am deceiving myself.
“Now, our God, we give you thanks and praise your glorious name.”
Thank you, Abba Father.
I will find him.
It’s true. And the opposite is true. If I don’t seek God, I can’t expect to find him. I won’t know him.
It’s also true that I will never totally know and and understand God because he is – well,
My 3 1/2 pound brain just can’t comprehend all of him. My goal is to seek to know and understand more of him every day, every week, every year. I have decided that I will be on this journey towards the Truth for the rest of my life.
And, when my journey on earth ends, I’m going to know God better than I know him now. I am going to understand him better than I understand him right now.
Because, when I seek him, I always find him and it’s all good.
King David shared this wisdom in 1 Chronicles with Solomon as he prepared to hand his throne over to his son. “If you seek him, he will be found by you.”
David knew this to be true from his own personal experience. He also understood that Solomon would need to seek God for himself in order to be the king God wanted him to be.
David realized that Solomon would not hear God, not understand God, not know God unless he spent significant time and effort in seeking him.
The same is true for you and me. There is no magic to growing in my knowledge of and faith in God. It takes a lot of time and effort. I have to willing to open my heart so God can change the things I love to the things he loves. I have to willing to open my mind so God can transform my thoughts – etching his truth over old lies and self-centered thinking. I have to read and study his Word and then let his Word come alive in my life – effecting the things I say and the things I do. It takes perseverence and commitment.
But there is nothing that is more worth the time and energy and effort.
That was not my intention.
It’s not a big deal.
These are all things we tell ourselves when we realize we have done something wrong but we don’t really want to acknowledge it. We often rationalize it away – never owning up to it.
We don’t admit our mistakes.
We move on like nothing happened.
People get hurt, we don’t trust each other and we struggle with our relationships.
One of the reasons King David was ‘a man after God’s own heart’ was because he was good at admitting it when he did something wrong. He was a little blind to how badly he had acted with Bathsheba until Nathan pointed it out to him. We all need great friends who will lovingly point it out when we mess up. As soon as David’s eyes were opened to his mistakes, he admitted them and repented.
That’s what God wants me to do when I’ve made a mistake – own it and try not to do it again. (confess and repent). God knows my heart so throwing “I’m sorry” around without meaning it doesn’t work. God can see whether I’m sincere in my apology and serious about not doing whatever it is again.
God wants you to admit your mistakes and repent, too.
Let’s not rationalize it away.
Let’s not say it’s ok – nobody is perfect.
Let’s not ignore it.
God wants us to have trusting, lasting relationships and dealing well with our mistakes is a big part of that.
Please help us to be quick to confess and repent, Abba Father.
Have you noticed?
I believe it’s true – some people have a direct line to God.
Because they pray in line with God’s will. When I pray for what God wants to give me, I always get it. He has promised me.
God tells me in James 1, when I pray for wisdom, I always get it – in generous amounts. When I pray for more of the Fruit of the Spirit, the Spirit that lives inside of me helps grow and nurture those things. When it’s God’s will for me, he says yes every time.
The key is praying God’s will. What does God want? What is best for his purposes?
To do this, I need to know God well. I need to have his word etched on my heart and mind so that it’s how I think. And – a tough one for me – I need to put what he wants ahead of what I want. There are times when God reveals to me through his Word what he wants done in a certain situation. Other times, I simply pray Jesus’ prayer, “Thy will be done.”
I can’t give God a list of things I want and expect him to say yes to everything. But when I pray for what God wants – knowing and trusting that what he wants is always best – it happens.
This doesn’t mean I don’t ask God for things I want. He tells us to pray to him all the time on every occasion about everything. It does mean that the answer will not be ‘yes’ when I’m praying out of line with his will.
In 1 Chronicles, David was trying to bring the Ark of God back to Jerusalem but he was running into big problems. One of his men died because he touched the Ark to steady it. That scared David so he left the Ark with a local family and went on to Jerusalem. There, he realized the issue with the Ark was “we did not inquire of him (God) about how to do it in the prescribed way.”
So he consulted God and, when they did it God’s way, they were successful. David danced with joy in front of the Ark as it entered Jerusalem, the City of David.
When I ask God to do things his way, my direct line to God is wide open.
And the answer is always ‘yes’.
Thank you, Abba Father.
Hold me close, God.
I need to feel the safety of being held by you. Hold me tightly in your arms while this storm roars through my life.
I cry out to you, Most High God, and you send your angels to save me. The problems and trials which are overwhelming me are pushed away. I feel your love and I trust your faithfulness.
People who do not want the best for me surround me. They desire to take my peace and make me afraid.
But you, Father God, are in control of everything. With power and love you rule the earth.
People around me try to snare me with their lies and tricks. They dig pits with their evil mouths and then fall into the pits themselves.
My heart, Oh God, is your’s forever. I will praise you all day long. I will sing about your great love which fills the earth. I will sing about your great faithfulness which reaches endlessly to the skies.