Tag Archives: Psalm

Don’t Limit God

Spirit limit

If only I had failed God once and learned my lesson I’d consider myself in pretty good shape for the shape I’m in; that shape being a sinner saved by grace. But no, I have to again and again fail God, beg mercy, feel minty fresh for about 30 seconds and then sin again. Why are we such a fickle lot of people? Christian people that is. Am I alone? I’m pretty sure I’m not.

This past week a well-known preacher, Perry Noble, and one that I had followed, fell. I loved this guy. He wasn’t perfect and I didn’t agree with everything he said but I loved his style of preaching and his “realness.” The problem with being real is it also makes you pretty transparent. Because you’ll say anything. If it comes into your mind, it’s usually out of your mouth before you give a second thought.  This was his style. He was funny and charismatic and above all, thousands of souls came to know the saving grace of Jesus Christ through him. I believe that. His words stirred my soul and I believe God used Him. But he fell, because he, like I, am human. His transparency gave me a spiritual insight to him that said “proceed with caution.” He dabbled too close the snake pit, and that my friend has gotten many a preacher in trouble. Alcohol was his downfall, and I won’t even get started on that because I could write for days! And it’s not the point in this blog. My point is the limits we put on God is through sin’s hold. It’s not the sin itself, it’s the hold it get on us.

Israel let God down again and again. But His great mercy brought them through. Read what David said in Psalm 78

But he, being full of compassion, forgave their iniquity, and destroyed them not: yea, many a time turned he his anger away, and did not stir up all his wrath.  For he remembered that they were but flesh; a wind that passeth away, and cometh not again. How oft did they provoke him in the wilderness, and grieve him in the desert! Yea, they turned back and tempted God, and limited the Holy One of Israel.

Psalm 78:38-41

God understood Israel and He understands us. He knows we are weak vessels and that we fall, but the key is to move forward away from the snake pit. Turning back doesn’t stop God’s forgiveness… He’ll forgive again and again. But He won’t bless again and again. We limit Him. Even God has limits, they’re called “us.”

He desires to pour His blessings down upon us, bring revival into our church houses but our turning back puts a speed limit on the Holy Spirit. Turning back is different things for different people. For my preacher man that fell, he got too close a substance that fuels the fires of Hell. Alcohol. I hate it and everything it stands for. That was his sin, I have my own, and you have yours. And for the tribe of preachers that want to cast this preacher to the curb… God sees you too. God Who is full of compassion forgives, you who are full of pride will point and condemn the man God forgave.

My point to ponder is this: Don’t limit God. He forgave the sin, now move on. There’s a new speed sign up ahead that says “full throttle!”  Don’t turn back.

Don’t Play the Fool

psalm 14Wikipedia defines a jester as historically an entertainer during the medieval and Renaissance eras who was a member of the household of a nobleman employed to entertain him and his guests. I believe that also defines those who deny God.

History In the Making

The denying of God is as old as history itself. Man continually believes that they have life figured out; mocking God and His people for their weakness of having faith, not realizing the very thing they define as weakness is the strength that allows the child of God to live in a state of peace, which the fool who denies God desires, and yet refuses because it’s too simple.

Household of the Nobleman

I thought this morning, as I looked about my meager home, that I have missed the mark. I desire more… more stuff. And stuff for certain is fun and I believe God for “stuff” that will glorify Him and allow me to be used for His glory, but not at the cost of the world’s nobleman. The world defines success on a tally sheet of wealth and the fact that they can pay for entertainment to preoccupy their minds and keep it off the spiritual side of life. Allowing the guilt of denying God to be suppressed. But He is still there, whether or not you are reminded.

His Guests

The nobleman, or noblewoman as the case may be, love to entertain the masses. They love to draw people into themselves, giving them the feeling of power and control; all the while they are deceived and they serve to deceive. Countless souls are pulled away from the pulling of the Spirit of God, that draws all men unto Him (John 12:32). Pulled away by the entertainment of Satan himself disguised as a court jester, and he laughs and laughs and laughs. And the noblemen and women continue in misery disguised as amusement. They know it…

Psalm 14:1 says

The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God. They are corrupt, they have done abominable works, there is none that doeth good.

There is a God. His name is Jesus. He is holy and sovereign and He speaks to the heart of every man and woman, pleading with them to come home. Today I may not live in a mansion bright, but when I lay down my head at night, I know that if I should not wake to see the light, with my Creator my soul is right. And that my friend lets me sleep tight.

That’s a peace that cannot be bought. Do you seek it? Then you seek Jesus.

It’s good to know

psalm 5

What a privilege and joy to wake up to an awesome God! With every second of my day before me, it’s wonderful to know that God goes before it placing His stamp of approval on the events that I know not what, but I know that He has not allowed anything to happen without purpose; and He will receive praise and honor. He allows me to be used in His service… gracious… what a privilege that is! I sometimes forget who it is that I work for.

This morning as I sit with coffee in hand and my eyes toward heaven the words came easy, and short. But though they are few, the truth within them is vast.

Psalm 5:3

My voice shalt thou hear in the morning, O Lord; in the morning will I direct my prayer unto thee, and will look up.

It’s wonderful to know… He is there.

I hear His voice and I’m so glad!

shepherd in the storm

The past few weeks I’ve been off the grid as far as my blog posts are concerned because I was getting back in touch with the paper version of my Bible with a renewed excitement for the word of God and all because of a journaling bible, a pack of markers and a new box of colored pencils… Simple folks have simple ways, right?

I’m all about the digital version of the Bible! I love that I can read and search for scripture with the click of a button and within a second have the very word of God before my eyes. It’s amazing! But there was something about the paper version that I was missing. Nothing tops having the Holy Spirit in your heart, or having the word of God in your hand… Add to that markers and colored pencils and oh my stars! It’s like heaven came down. True story!

And so it was that I became an addict again to my Bible. Every spare second I could find I was reading the pages hoping to find an image rolling around in my mind to doodle on the pages of that precious book, bringing it even more to life and causing my mind to ponder…

David said it in Psalm 77 when he thought God had all but forgotten him… we get that way when we’re not reading and studying the word of God like we should. Listen to his words and see if they heaped conviction upon you as they did me:

10 And I said, This is my infirmity: but I will remember the years of the right hand of the most High. 11 I will remember the works of the Lord: surely I will remember thy wonders of old. 12 I will meditate also of all thy work, and talk of thy doings. 13 Thy way, O God, is in the sanctuary: who is so great a God as our God?

He essentially said, “This is my problem God. You are still awesome…”

I did this, I got away from the God, I allowed the world to come into my life and upset the balance. God didn’t move nor change. He’s still as awesome as He ever was. And so I began to remember the “right hand of the most High” who lead me to where I am today, and the many things that He has brought me through. As I doodled on the sides of those pages I meditated on the Words that caused the images to come into my mind… and God would bring me into the sanctuary of His presence. Who is so great a God as our God?

There is none so great as our God! The final verse in this chapter says that “Thou leddest thy people like a flock by the hand of Moses and Aaron.”  And it was there that this image came into my mind of the sheep being lead through the storm… I am that sheep… and God will bring me through because “He is forever, come what may, absolutely awesome.”

Did David’s words speak to your heart about your time with God? David not only meditated and thought on God’s word but he said that he then talked of what God had done. And I realized again that this wonderful platform that God gave me is a powerful thing and is meant to encourage the believer to keep going, to draw the sinner to Christ and soothe the soul of the hurting. It’s my job to paint the pictures of the Holy Spirit with words and share those with people so that they too might be encouraged in the same manner I am as I write them.

God is awesome… I needed to tell you that today. Even in the storms of life He’s leading His sheep… I hear His voice… and I am so glad…

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Is God a Journaler?

psalm 139Psalm 139

In the darkness of my room this morning, as the sun contemplating coming out from beneath the covers, I opened my Bible app on my phone and began to read in Psalm 139. Darkness messes with my mind… I start pondering things I shouldn’t ponder, my imagination takes me down dimly lit pathways where the future is uncertain. Silence is not always golden… praise God for technology that allows me to read in the dark!

He knows me

1O lord, thou hast searched me, and known me.

Not the “me” that my family and friends know, God knows me. The part that He created, and the parts that I messed up. God know that me, and yet He loves me. Yet, He desires to commune with me and I trail off down dark path…

Thou knowest my downsitting and mine uprising, thou understandest my thought afar off.

Thou compassest my path and my lying down, and art acquainted with all my ways.

As I lie in bed this morning and read those words I smiled. How awesome God, that in this dark hour, You know my ways. You know the concerns of my heart and the troubles that beset me and You understand! You walked this earth and defeated the foes that I fight, so why am I fighting them? Because it’s a dark time we live in, and I, more often than not, am content to lie in the darkness rather than turn on the light of the glorious gospel that expels the shadows. Silly me.

For there is not a word in my tongue, but, lo, O Lord, thou knowest it altogether.

Thou hast beset me behind and before, and laid thine hand upon me.

Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high, I cannot attain unto it.

Nobody knows me like God, and in spite of it He laid His hand upon me and anointed me with purpose and so I understand the Psalmist when he says “Such knowledge is too wonderful.” I know that I do not deserve the blessings that God has poured upon and through me and allowed me to work in the ministry of the Lord, the very thing that I desired in my heart but feared because it was a path I could not see down. Oh, great God… “I” cannot attain to it; but through Christ Who strengthens me, I can do all things! So it says in Philippians 4:13.

He Is With Me

Whither shall I go from thy spirit? or whither shall I flee from thy presence?

If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there: if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there.

If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea;

10 Even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me.

11 If I say, Surely the darkness shall cover me; even the night shall be light about me.

12 Yea, the darkness hideth not from thee; but the night shineth as the day: the darkness and the light are both alike to thee.

Loneliness, like the darkness, can have me feeling lost. I’m my own best friend and worst enemy all packed into one. But God knows that. There are times when the Holy Spirit of God is pushed and pushed and pushed into the recesses of my mind so that I can spend more time with me; the good, the bad, and the ugly me. But He patiently waits for me to tire of my company. It’s usually about the time that I fall to Satan’s lies that “nobody really cares about your problems, Shari, they’ve got plenty of their own,” when I feel God nudge me and say… “I’ve never left you. I’ve always cared.”

He Leads Me

I don’t know how I got into Psalm 139 this morning. I hadn’t been reading there… but it was a path that God laid out, just as He has my life.

13 For thou hast possessed my reins: thou hast covered me in my mother’s womb.

14 I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well.

Oh wait… I do remember how I got to Psalm 139! I was scoping out a bible journaler on Instagram and a verse from 139 was there. Her thoughts were not mine. God had an entirely different plan for her, another path. But it was wonderfully made like mine.

He Writes of Me

15 My substance was not hid from thee, when I was made in secret, and curiously wrought in the lowest parts of the earth.

16 Thine eyes did see my substance, yet being unperfect; and in thy book all my members were written, which in continuance were fashioned, when as yet there was none of them.

17 How precious also are thy thoughts unto me, O God! how great is the sum of them!

18 If I should count them, they are more in number than the sand: when I awake, I am still with thee.

I love to write. And what sweet words those were to my heart to see that God is a Journaler too! I have to wonder if on the pages of His book, in living color, is not an image of me. The word says that “all my members were written.” That sounds like pictures to me! That may or may not be stretchin’ it, but this is my blog and my thoughts… and that’s the way it went.

Search Me, O God

19 Surely thou wilt slay the wicked, O God: depart from me therefore, ye bloody men.

20 For they speak against thee wickedly, and thine enemies take thy name in vain.

21 Do not I hate them, O Lord, that hate thee? and am not I grieved with those that rise up against thee?

22 I hate them with perfect hatred: I count them mine enemies.

23 Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts:

24 And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.

On this Election Day 2016, there has been much blaspheming of the Lord’s name. It angers me and causes me to want to travel down a dark path with a ball bat… just sayin’. I’m not violent. I hate that too, but when I think about the destruction on this world by words, my flesh rises and I want retribution for my Lord. But it’s not my fight. He won that won too. So for today, at least for this minute… I ask the Lord to search me. Those are the thoughts that I have control over.

Heaven help our nation… please.

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What to do when you’re feeling Down

moodI almost laughed out loud when I read David’s Psalm. I so got it. It’s what happens when an optimist has a down day, or perhaps several down days. There is no doubt that I’m a glass half full kind of gal, but even we have days where the cups looking  a little empty and there’s not a coffee pot in sight. Yes, that’s what my joy cup is filled with. That orange and white bag of pure goodness called Duncan Donuts! Life will get you down and it’s not a time to let go of your sunny disposition at the hand of a joy snatcher. They’re out there ready to steal your joy, suck the life out of your day and drink the last drop of liquid sunshine. So what can you do to get your joy back?

Let’s take a gander at what King David did.

HE COMPLAINED

Psalm 77

Vs. 1~ I cried unto God with my voice, even unto God with my voice; and he gave ear unto me.

Pray and believe God listens. The first thing Satan will tell you is that God doesn’t care about your trouble. Yes He does and Satan’s a liar, move on. Even if life doesn’t get better for a while you have to trust God. Listen to David’s complaint.

Vs. 2-10 ~  In the day of my trouble I sought the Lord: my sore ran in the night, and ceased not: my soul refused to be comforted. I remembered God, and was troubled: I complained, and my spirit was overwhelmed. Selah. Thou holdest mine eyes waking: I am so troubled that I cannot speak. I have considered the days of old, the years of ancient times.

God’s okay with a complainer. From God’s vantage point our problem has a beginning, middle and end. He knows them all, but He understands that we don’t. God doesn’t expect us to be a super saint, that’s why He put the illustrations throughout the bible of real people like David who made huge mistakes, who had huge troubles and huge enemies and God delivered him, even after he whined.

HE COMMUNED

 I call to remembrance my song in the night: I commune with mine own heart: and my spirit made diligent search. Will the Lord cast off for ever? and will he be favourable no more? Is his mercy clean gone for ever? doth his promise fail for evermore? Hath God forgotten to be gracious? hath he in anger shut up his tender mercies? Selah. And I said, This is my infirmity: but I will remember the years of the right hand of the most High.

David complained but he finally got to the realization that “he” was going to have to get over it. When he communed with his heart. This is my infirmity he said. This is not God’s problem, God doesn’t have problems. I have to get over myself and realize that God’s got me covered. Just as David did we can complain or we can choose to move on and allow God to do something amazing in us. But He can’t do that if we’re stuck in the mire of complaining. We have to search our spirit and find that happy place that will allow us to pull ourselves up out the mire and start afresh. It’s when taking three steps back is a good idea. Look at what God has not only brought your through but the examples He set before us.

HE COMPILED THE VICTORIES

Vs. 11-20 ~ I will remember the works of the Lord: surely I will remember thy wonders of old. I will meditate also of all thy work, and talk of thy doings. Thy way, O God, is in the sanctuary: who is so great a God as our God? Thou art the God that doest wonders: thou hast declared thy strength among the people. Thou hast with thine arm redeemed thy people, the sons of Jacob and Joseph. Selah. The waters saw thee, O God, the waters saw thee; they were afraid: the depths also were troubled.  The clouds poured out water: the skies sent out a sound: thine arrows also went abroad. The voice of thy thunder was in the heaven: the lightnings lightened the world: the earth trembled and shook. Thy way is in the sea, and thy path in the great waters, and thy footsteps are not known. Thou leddest thy people like a flock by the hand of Moses and Aaron.

David got into the word of God and looked at the victories God had won in the lives of His people. Seriously, what does our problems look like in comparison to Moses and the children of Israel being chased by Pharaoh’s army? Facing 40 years in the wilderness? David had the Old Testament, we have the New Testament.  Look at the victory won for us on the cross; the Holy Spirit dwells within our soul and encourages us from within to go on, God’s got us covered. We have so much more!

Yes, we’ll have bad days and we can complain, But Commune with the Spirit of God and Compile your list of things that God has brought you through before. And move on! Let God do something so amazing that you can’t even comprehend it!

That’s my God! I’m headed back for another cup of liquid sunshine to get this day started.

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When’s the last time you’ve really tasted it?

chick honeyFor forty years the children of Israel ate manna, a small coriander seed textured food that was described as tasting like wafers made of honey, and honey is something I’ve ate a lot of lately. About a week ago I got my annual dose of winter meets spring which inevitably causes my body to go into shock. You’d think it would be happy about those circumstances, but instead it goes into the next season kicking, but no screaming… I lost my voice. And while that made for a lot of funny stories about how peace now reigned in the house, and lead to laughter when I attempted to sing it really did mess with my psyche. I sing most every day. It encourages my soul and sets my heart in a mode of worship. So when I couldn’t sing I began dosing myself with cough drops, tea and honey, and little by little my voice returned; just in time for a recital at Bearfork Bluegrass which occurs in a few hours. I’m a happy camper!  But as I start this day, my mind is on the manna. The “just right” provision of the Lord that somewhat seems routine and unexciting to some.

Exodus 16:15

And when the children of Israel saw it, they said one to another, It is manna: for they wist not what it was. And Moses said unto them, This is the bread which the Lord hath given you to eat.

Let’s just call it manna.

They didn’t know what it was. So they decided they’d call it manna. In the beginning they were excited… but slowly and surely manna grew tiresome. It’s called life. We all have somewhat of a routine we get into, including serving God if you’re a Christian. It’s unfortunate for most people serving God is from 10 a.m. – noon on Sunday. Possibly two other hours if they can be squeezed in between ballgames, meetings and the laundry. I doubt it was always like that. The day they realized the provision of God they were excited too! But then it grew dull. Why?

Acts 28:27 sums it up for us.

For the heart of this people is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes have they closed; lest they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them.

  • Waxed gross – Unpolished
  • Dull of hearing – Selective hearing
  • Eyes closed – Out of sight out of mind.

And each one a craftily designed tool of Satan.

An unpolished Christian is one that doesn’t stay active with the tools God gave us, reading the Word of God, Worshiping, attending services. These are those that polish us and make us shine for all the world to see.

Those dull of hearing have chosen to let the voices of the world chime louder than that of the Holy Spirit and in so doing denied themselves the opportunity to hear the sweet voice of God.

Closing your eyes to the opportunities God affords you for fellowship could eventually get you into permanent darkened state that you don’t want to be in.

Because of my throat issue I fell in love with honey again. I hadn’t eaten any honey for quite some time. But when that sweetness hit my tounge…. Oh…. It was sooooo good. That’s how I feel in the house of the Lord and when I spend time in the Word of God and with His people.

How long has it been since you tasted the provision of God anew? Tomorrow’s Sunday… a new day to a new week, and an opportunity for you to taste again that sweet Spirit of God. I pray tomorrow finds you in a good, Bible believin’ and preachin’ church! If you’re in my neighborhood, I hope to see you at Victory Baptist Church, 2037 South Calhoun Highway, Grantsville, WV. It’s where I found manna in 1996 and it’s been keeping me happy and hole for 20 years!

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Feast on His mercy, Skip the Pity Party

chick mercy2

Twenty six times in Psalm 136 David reminds his audience of readers that God’s  “mercy endureth forever.” I cannot think of a day in my life that I did not need the mercies of God. There have been days that I’ve been oblivious to the need, but it was still there. I’m certain there were days that had I known the risk I was in my heart would have failed. I’m certain of this because I’m a child of God and although God’s thoughts toward me are peace, and not of evil.” (Jeremiah) 29:11, Satan’s desire is to sift me as wheat. (Luke 22:31) That’s quite a contrast.

There’s a variety of mercies of God, I’ve no doubt needed every one; but a great and mighty lie of Satan is that God’s mercy grows weary. And with my many failures I buy it like yesterday’s newspaper for the truth with the end result being feelings of doubt and a lack of self-worth and the ministry of God suffers. And Satan’s evil laugh is heard across the land because he has won one of his little battles. God’s thoughts are peace, Satan’s thoughts are upheaval and destruction and it’s aimed at the children of God and the ministries of God. If he can keep our minds focused on our defeats, our victories will be fewer.

Take back the trophies of grace that Satan desires to steal by reminding him of God’s mercies.

Psalm 36

Start with applause!

1O give thanks unto the Lord; for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever.

O give thanks unto the God of gods: for his mercy endureth for ever.

O give thanks to the Lord of lords: for his mercy endureth for ever.

God’s mercy is worth praising Him for and it heaps coals upon the head of Satan to hear God’s people’s applause. Take a minute to thank Him for the many times that God has provided His mercy in abundance.

Stand in Awe

To him who alone doeth great wonders: for his mercy endureth for ever.

To him that by wisdom made the heavens: for his mercy endureth for ever.

To him that stretched out the earth above the waters: for his mercy endureth for ever.

To him that made great lights: for his mercy endureth for ever:

The sun to rule by day: for his mercy endureth for ever:

The moon and stars to rule by night: for his mercy endureth for ever.

Praise Him for His mercy on creation. He created this marvelous universe for us. What a gift! And even though we neglect it and take poor care of it, in His mercy He renews it and rejuvenates not only the earth but the spirit within us when we see the beauty of it all. Glory to God for His merciful gifts!

Stay in the Fight

10 To him that smote Egypt in their firstborn: for his mercy endureth for ever:

11 And brought out Israel from among them: for his mercy endureth for ever:

12 With a strong hand, and with a stretched out arm: for his mercy endureth for ever.

13 To him which divided the Red sea into parts: for his mercy endureth for ever:

14 And made Israel to pass through the midst of it: for his mercy endureth for ever:

15 But overthrew Pharaoh and his host in the Red sea: for his mercy endureth for ever.

16 To him which led his people through the wilderness: for his mercy endureth for ever.

17 To him which smote great kings: for his mercy endureth for ever:

18 And slew famous kings: for his mercy endureth for ever:

19 Sihon king of the Amorites: for his mercy endureth for ever:

20 And Og the king of Bashan: for his mercy endureth for ever:

21 And gave their land for an heritage: for his mercy endureth for ever:

22 Even an heritage unto Israel his servant: for his mercy endureth for ever.

23 Who remembered us in our low estate: for his mercy endureth for ever:

24 And hath redeemed us from our enemies: for his mercy endureth for ever.

Look at the many great and mighty battles that God has brought His people through, and the miracles that He worked for them again and again, even after their many failures. There is no excuse for sin, but praise God! who has redeemed us through the blood of His Son Jesus and wants us to move past our failures into victorious living. We need to stop focusing on the failures of the 2015, or 1947. Whatever it is that has you living below the plateau that God has in mind for you. Satan knows if he can keep you looking back, you’ll never move forward.

Stop only for the Banquets

25 Who giveth food to all flesh: for his mercy endureth for ever.

26 O give thanks unto the God of heaven: for his mercy endureth for ever.

Celebrate the goodness and mercy of God by stopping to reflect on what He’s done. Take some time out of your day to feast on His goodness and give Him glory but under no circumstances should you attend one of Satan’s pity parties!

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Encouraging the Weary Warrior

chick warrior

Matthew Henry wrote in his commentary of Psalm 108 that by our heart’s conviction our tongue becomes the pen of a ready writer. (reworded slightly for my own better understanding) I have so much to thank God for and testify of His goodness and yet I fall short when the Holy Spirit says tell them what I’ve done in your life! But my raisin’ tells on me again, because I was brought up by humble parents who taught us that boasting was a sign of arrogance. While they encouraged us in talents we were reigned back from pride. Which is good, except for me who takes that a step further in my spiritual walk and I have difficulty telling the world how good God is to me because I feel that I’m bragging about myself, which ends up neglecting to give God glory.

Consider this past month. I received a good doctor’s report. And to put that in context I hadn’t been to see a doctor for 15 or so years… don’t judge… it’s not nice, and yes, I know I’m an idiot. But praise God He takes care of stupid people. And my reports came back that I’m in good shape for the shape I’m in. Well after a few weeks of fretting over what the results of some of those test might have been, I really wanted to shout it to the roof tops; but I couldn’t. Or I should say wouldn’t because I thought it sounded like bragging in light of how many people around me had recently gotten bad doctor’s reports. So I told a few family and friends, but my tongue wasn’t writing a book, merely a post script. And the Holy Spirit was grieved, after all He and I both new that He had worked some miraculous things in this body of mine considering how I’d taken care of myself.

But Sunday night I pushed aside my fear of boasting and decided that I needed to brag a little on the Lord by testifying to my home church about His goodness. Oh, God was pleased. But it’s still heavy on my heart that I do not tell of His goodness enough; which often causes a lack of confidence in many areas of my life that I struggle. So for my scripture reflection and study today I landed in Psalm 108. A baker’s dozen of verses (13) where David’s confidence in the Lord soars!

David begins praising God early.

1O God, my heart is fixed; I will sing and give praise, even with my glory. Awake, psaltery and harp: I myself will awake early.

When our eyes open in the darkness of the room or the light of day a song of praise should be on our lips. That’s how it is with nature. Come spring the birds outside my window chirp loudly in the sweetest refrain. So should a child of God who’s been given another day.

I will praise thee, O Lord, among the people: and I will sing praises unto thee among the nations.

David praised God in his community. He encouraged them through sharing his faith. How wonderful it must have been to have a leader who glorified God and even in the worst of times had songs of praise on his heart. Oh… for such a leader.

For thy mercy is great above the heavens: and thy truth reacheth unto the clouds. Be thou exalted, O God, above the heavens: and thy glory above all the earth;

Like myself, David had let God down, but God had never once let David down. His goodness and truth stretched from earth to Heaven; David couldn’t say enough about what a great God He served. And God was pleased.

David prayed as he praised but he still exalted the name of God by acknowledging God’s protection and provision. Would that not have been an encouragement to his weary warriors. How might we encourage the weary warriors in our life today by reminding them of the mighty God we serve? Faith can rejoice in what God has said, although it’s yet to be done. If God said it… it’s a fact.

6 That thy beloved may be delivered: save with thy right hand, and answer me.God hath spoken in his holiness; I will rejoice, I will divide Shechem, and mete out the valley of Succoth. Gilead is mine; Manasseh is mine; Ephraim also is the strength of mine head; Judah is my lawgiver;Moab is my washpot; over Edom will I cast out my shoe; over Philistia will I triump. 10 Who will bring me into the strong city? who will lead me into Edom?

I love that! David not only gave a list of what was already his, but what would be his in the name of Jesus! He was assuredly going to mop the floor with Moab. Can you hear his people cheering and standing to their feet with arms raised high? What a cheerleader!!!

David’s next verse almost sounds like he’s questioning God but it’s more of a reminder of what God has done in the past.

11 Wilt not thou, O God, who hast cast us off? and wilt not thou, O God, go forth with our hosts? 12 Give us help from trouble: for vain is the help of man. 13 Through God we shall do valiantly: for he it is that shall tread down our enemies.

God is faithful!

What a great Psalm of encouragement for the day. I’m facing battles, are you? Go with the same confidence David shared with his friends and share it with yours,  because we serve the same God! Amen.

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Don’t Lose Your Appetite

chick appetite

Physically speaking that is usually not an issue with me. My appetite seldom suffers a blow. Upon the rare occasion that it does it’s usually a physical thing, not an emotional issue because stress causes me to seek comfort with a Mr. Bee Potato Chip Bag and a Diet Coke. They of course counterbalance each other and all calories are sacrificially eliminated. That’s my story and I’m stickin’ to it. But for certain the appetite is a gauge of sort to the inner self.

I don’t think that it’s coincidence that God uses food for sacrifice and illustration so often in the Bible. He knows that it’s something we can identify with and appreciate, it’s a very important part of our lives. In celebration we gather round food, in mourning our family gathers after a funeral service for a meal, the communion table is set with bread and juice and the flavor as it hits my taste buds draws my mind to scripture and the day when God said we’d share it in His presence one day. Glory to God! that is such a special time! Food is important! Whole studies have been done on the importance of nutrition but today my mind is elsewhere.

Lack of appetite with the children of God is rampant when it comes to the things of God both spiritually and physically. I know that there are more causes than possible to list but I think they all fall into three catagories:

  1. We don’t want it.

In Psalm 23 (my refuge Psalm in times of heart ache) David says

1The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.

David didn’t want because the Lord provided his every need. We don’t want because we have too much. Americans are a spoiled nation where we throw away more in a week than many will have in a life time. True story… and because of our overabundance and constant craving for things we have no appetite for the things of God.

  1. We’re too tired for it.

He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.

David could lie down in the goodness and protection of God even in the midst of this trial and be at peace because he knew God was in control and that there was purpose in everything.

We run to and fro, and to and fro trying to meet self-made quotas and at the end of the day we collapse in exhaustion without so much as a “Thank You Jesus” for giving me another day. We have no appetite for the things of God because we’re worn out.

  1. We’re not even at the table

He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.

In order to eat and be nourished by the good things that God desires for us we have to be in a right relationship with Him. When God desired a sacrifice of Cain and Able, Cain refused obedience to God’s plan. He had this lovely fruit and veggie tray that he’d picked up from the Deli, but God had told him to go to the meat department, not produce. We try so hard to “produce” acceptable works. But God wants obedience… He’s the leader. He restored David’s soul because God was Shepherd of his soul.

  1. We’re afraid of it

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.

David could fear no evil because the rod was a rod of correction and the staff was a staff of direction, both were there to keep him safe. We’re afraid to be that close to the Lord and allow Him that kind of control. Just like the sheep David shepherded, he knew that he would be prey were it not for God’s protection.

  1. Dinner’s ready… are you ready for it?

Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.

Even in the presence of your enemy, whatever that may be: people, finances, relationships, health… God has prepared you the finest of cuisine. Don’t lose your appetite because of what’s going on around you. God’s in the kitchen waiting for you to come in and enjoy this awesome meal and time of fellowship with Him, but you’ve got to slow down… sit and rest… leave the pride and sin outside the door…allow God to guide you… and then sit and feast on His goodness.

This blog was totally for me… but I hope you tasted His goodness in your life too!

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