The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want (Psalm 23:1)
O most Merciful, Compassionate and Holy God, Your Name is Wonderful. Your Name is too Wonderful and being in Your Presence is too awe-inspiring to behold. I thank you for this new day of mercies, compassion and love because of Your Great Faithfulness, they never cease as You give rest and renewal to Your beloved in our sleep.
Oh Good Shepherd, we are in so grateful that You lead us, care for us, rescue us, nourish, guide and direct us. Your supernatural instincts is that none should perish, that none should be lost, that none should fall into a trap set by the foxes of this world. But Your pre-determined plan was, is and will always be for us to follow You, to stay out of the thicket of sin and to dwell in the green pastures You have ordained for Your elect, Your people.
We live in times where every one does what is right in their own eyes. We are surrounded by the false doctrine of the gods and the lost of this world who say that all religions, all systems no matter how vile, violent or void of any sort of human decency, love and mercy, those people, from the top of most so-called religious to the rulers of this world, say these things lead to You. And they are correct, these systems dreamed up by man do lead to You. They have an appointment before the Holy High Priest of Heaven and His Great White Throne when all the books are open and Judgment begins.
But yea, though Your people are persecuted, have their churches and villages burned and their children beheaded or sold into slavery, yea, do they and too many oppressed in their spirit - those who are captives all over to world, to sin, self and satan...yea though they walk through the Valley of the Shadow of Death, may they fear no evil. Because by the hook of Your Shepherd's rod, we know You doth pull us out of the pit. We know that Thy Rod and Thy Staff comfort the broken-hearted; keeps the temporarily blind and disobedient from falling into a trap and keeps us moving in the direction we should go.
Thank You, heavenly Father, for Your Amazing Plan to send the Good Shepherd Jesus, for His Work, while finished on the Cross for the Salvation of the World, continues even now as He intercedes and advocates our case minute by minute before Thy Throne, since we are His flock. Father, thank You with all our hearts, that the Great Lamb of God, sacrificed and sent to us, is now the Great Shepherd of His little lambs. I would rather be one of His Sheep, following my Master, resting in the Truth of His leadership of my life, than a king or a rich man in this dirty dying world of sinful death. The Lord, He is my Shepherd, and I will never want any other, or any other thing. In that promise, I abide in my leader, and am thus, able to need nothing else, but Jesus and it is in His Name I pray, amen. Oh thank You, most Gracious God, thank You. Amen.
Today, I am going to write the first of a series of devotional thoughts about Psalm 13. In this psalm there can be found a desperate man, David, calling out to God with all that he had.
First, a little background. It is likely that David wrote this psalm/song/prayer while being pursued by Saul in the mountains. This prayer was used by the Israelite's (and us) to ask for help in the face of long term struggles, illness, persecution, poverty, etc.
One of the keys to this psalm is found in the first two verses where David asks the same question four times. "How long?" I know for sure that we have all asked that question many times. In this prayer David is weeping in grief. These four questions form the basis for the devotional today.
1. How long will you forget me, Lord? Will it be forever?! This is a question that people of all eras of history have asked. But just like us they expected God to give them a microwave answer. They wanted an instant solution. Sometimes God says wait awhile because He wants us to learn something.
2. How long will you hide from me? In the heat of the battle we all wonder where God is. He is not absent as we suppose. He is busy working out all things for our good.
3. How long must I worry and feel sad in my heart all day long? This is another ageless question. Every person has asked this question. The answer is not an easy one, but a clue is found at the end of Matthew 6. Jesus says each day has enough trouble of it's own. He says to concentrate on today and to do all you can to make things right and then trust Him for the rest. In other words the worries for tomorrow should be left to Him.
4. How long will my enemy win over me? Yikes, that is close isn't it? It seems that everybody has had someone taunt, bully, discourage us by attacking us physically, verbally or emotionally.
These four questions come from the depths of our souls and deserve an answer. In the next day or two you can read here what has been learned.
But for today, know this: It is alright to ask God these tough questions. He is not bothered by honest and brutal questions. He doesn't remove His love from us because we question Him. In fact, He uses these times of questioning to build us up for His purposes. Because He works all things together for His purposes.
A simple prayer: Oh Lord, I need relief. I trust in You for that relief. I am waiting patiently (sort of) for Your answer and teaching.
As we celebrate the birth, life, death, resurrection and ascension of Jesus
EVERY day, I share this song with you that reminds us that we are the
only Jesus some people will ever see. Let us continue to pray that
the church will truly reflect the testimony of Jesus on the earth!
God richly bless you and those you love and reward your faithfulness!