Monday 4 June, 2018

Psalm 77

For the director of music. For Jeduthun. Of Asaph. A psalm. 1 I cried out to God for help; I cried out to God to hear me. 2 When I was in distress, I sought the Lord; at night I stretched out untiring hands, and I would not be comforted. 3 I remembered you, God, and I groaned; I meditated, and my spirit grew faint. 4 You kept my eyes from closing; I was too troubled to speak. 5 I thought about the former days, the years of long ago; 6 I remembered my songs in the night. My heart meditated and my spirit asked: 7 “Will the Lord reject forever? Will he never show his favor again? 8 Has his unfailing love vanished forever? Has his promise failed for all time? 9 Has God forgotten to be merciful? Has he in anger withheld his compassion?” 10 Then I thought, “To this I will appeal: the years when the Most High stretched out his right hand. 11 I will remember the deeds of the Lord; yes, I will remember your miracles of long ago. 12 I will consider all your works and meditate on all your mighty deeds.” 13 Your ways, God, are holy. What god is as great as our God? 14 You are the God who performs miracles; you display your power among the peoples. 15 With your mighty arm you redeemed your people, the descendants of Jacob and Joseph. 16 The waters saw you, God, the waters saw you and writhed; the very depths were convulsed. 17 The clouds poured down water, the heavens resounded with thunder; your arrows flashed back and forth. 18 Your thunder was heard in the whirlwind, your lightning lit up the world; the earth trembled and quaked. 19 Your path led through the sea, your way through the mighty waters, though your footprints were not seen. 20 You led your people like a flock by the hand of Moses and Aaron.

It seems to me to be a tendency of human nature to default to feeling/assuming abandonment in times of struggle. The author of the Psalm clearly knew and loved God so well – he is recorded as a prophet and a worship leader of Israel-and yet in the middle of the night (when his troubles are crowding in on him) he is indulging feelings of isolation and despair. Why is it that we assume hard times = not loved by God. The Author chooses in verse 10 to turn his focus from his troubles to the Faithfulness of God.

Someone wise once said to me: you need to stop seeking the Will of God and start seeking the Face of God. I have found this profound in facing some of the toughest moments and decisions in my life. While I am seeking God’s will it’s still all about me – what should I be doing? When my focus shifts to the Face of God it’s no longer about me but rather all about God. Half way through the Psalm Asaph shifts his focus, and finds his hope in the faithfulness and power of Almighty God. I want to find the same hope and assurance as Asaph, regardless of my circumstances. Asaph could have asked God ‘what should I do?’ but instead he says ‘God you are amazing!’ He aligns himself with God’s greatness, not the greatness of his Problem.

Heavenly Father, thank you for your great and wonderous love. Reveal your power in my life and help me to be like you. Help me Father to reflect your Glory.

Written by Christine Knight

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