Thursday, March 31, 2011

Psalm 89

Claiming God's Promises in Affliction

This psalm is a contemplation of Ethan the Ezrahite, a wise man of Israel who lived in the time of King Solomon.  The foundation of Psalm 89 is the promise of a throne for David's dynasty forever.  This is especially relevant because, at the time the psalm is penned, the family of David (and the state of Israel) is in a deplorable condition.

Nevertheless, the psalmist begins with songs of praise.  During times of trial may we, like Ethan, allow our complaints to be turned into thanksgiving.

Sarah Young expresses this similar thought in her book Jesus Calling:
Expect to encounter adversity in your life, remembering that you live in a deeply fallen world.  Stop trying to find a way that circumvents difficulties.  The main problem with an easy life is that it masks your need for Me.
When you see armies of problems marching towards you, cry out to Me!  Allow Me to fight for you.  Watch Me working on your behalf, as you rest in the shadow of My Almighty Presence.
The psalmist remembers God's might:
O Lord God of hosts,
Who is mighty like You, O Lord?
Your faithfulness also surrounds You. 
~ Ps. 88:8

This is another psalm in which the time of difficulty seems long and without end, and that God seems to have forgotten His people.  But even without an end in sight, the psalmist concludes his thoughts with praise for the Lord.  He corrects his complaints, and thus his mindset, ending with what he knows to be true about God in spite of the present circumstances.   He trusts in the facts, not his feelings.
I will make known Your faithfulness to all generations. 
~ Ps.  88:1
  • God is merciful, faithful, almighty, truthful, righteous, and just
  • He is a covenant-keeping God
  • God is greatly to be feared
  • The earth, the heavens, the world & all its fullness, are God's. 
  • My shield belongs to God
  • He is the rock of my salvation
  • God is lovingly kind
  • I praise the Lord that He can be trusted at all times. 
  • I praise God that He is the blessed Controller of the universe
     Today's prayer is penned by Ruth Myers in 31 Days of Praise:
O Lord Most High, I praise You for Your sovereignty over the broad events of my life and over the details.  With You, nothing is accidental, nothing is incidental, and no experience is wasted.  You hold in Your own power my breath of life and all my destiny.  And every trial that You allow to happen is a platform on which You reveal Yourself, showing Your love and power, both to me and to others looking on. 

Thank You that I can move into the future nondefensively, with hands outstretched to whatever lies ahead, for You hold the future and You will always be with me, even to my old age  . . . and through all eternity.

In Jesus' name I pray ~ Amen

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