Bread – Forgetfulness

August 12, 2016


Psalm 30

As for me, I said in my prosperity, I shall never be moved.  By Your favor, O Lord, You made my mountain stand strong…You have turned my mourning into dancing; You have loosed my sackcloth and clothed me with gladness, that my glory may sing Your praise and not be silent.  O Lord my God, I will give thanks to You forever!”  Ps. 30:6-7,11-12

As we go from mountaintop to valley and back again, it seems like we are either living in prosperity or in sackcloth and ashes.  Some days are great; some are not.  Sometimes we feel loved; sometimes we feel abandoned.  Some days we feel rich; other days we feel poor.  How we feel, of course, rides the waves of others and ourselves, our temperament and our body or brain chemistry at the time.  When we are feeling good, we try to hold onto those feelings, sometimes to the point of propping them up with “good’ books, “good” music, or “good” drugs.  When we are feeling poorly, we try to get away from that as fast as possible, to the point of suppressing those thoughts with “good” books, “good” music, or “good” drugs.

But the life of plenty in all circumstances, when we are prosperous and we are poor, when we are strong and when we are weak, when we are loved and when our love is lost, is not found in good books, good music, good friends, or good drugs … it is found in God, in Jesus Christ.

The reason I quoted the Psalm the way I did today is the great contrast between verses 6 and 7, when David is feeling prosperous, and verses 11 and 12, when he is glad even though having just returned from the valley of death (or at least it felt like it).

How did we go from feelings of prosperity to sackcloth and ashes?  What happened?

The answer to this question is not in the verses in between.  I think that the answer is locked up in verses 6 and 7.

“As for me, I said in my prosperity …”  Where is God in this statement?  How many times does David use the personal pronouns “I,” ‘my” and “me.”  Now, admittedly, in verse 7, David acknowledges that it is God’s favor which makes David’s mountain stand strong, but who does David think is the source of his prosperity?  Himself or God?

When we get to the end verses, it is clear that in adversity, it is only God’s action which saves and restores.  But who does David think is really responsible for the good times when he is prosperous?

Aren’t we guilty of the same trap?  When we are in trouble, we turn to God for relief.  When we are prosperous, we pat ourselves on the back for a job well done.

But isn’t God in both?  In fact, isn’t God the source of both?

How do we stand in the evil day and the good day?  Not in our own merit, but by the grace and power of God.

And the sooner we learn that and take it to heart, the sooner we will be free of doubt, pain, worry, and fear in and out of season, in the good times and the bad, in all phases of life.  Because when we stand on the foundation which God has laid, we stand on the rock of ages.

But, when we have power, influence, money, things, love, friends, position … how  quickly we forget and say to ourselves “As for me, I said in my prosperity I shall never be moved.”

When what we need to say is “As for me, I said in God’s prosperity I, with the help of God, shall never be moved.”

The first “as for me” is baloney; the second “as for me” is the truth.

So, as we go into the weekend, let us not forget whose we are, whose property we have custody over, and whose children we should love as we ourselves have been loved.  Who is “whose?”  Big hint – it’s not us, it is Him.

_________

© 2016 GBF   All Scripture quotations are from the English Standard Version (2001), unless otherwise indicated.

 

 

 

 

 

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