“Long enough, God!” we cry out like David. We were not ready to shut down “life as it was” to “life as it is” with restrictions for gathering in small to large crowds. Humans’ true colors of character come out into the open for all to see when regular routines that we thought were in our control are taken from us. Control seems to be the biggest issue fueled by living a life opposite of the growing fruits of the Holy Spirit which are the characteristics of God that He wants to mature in all of us! (See Galatians 5:23)
Some have reverted to survival mode, clustering inside with their families, hoarding supplies, and generally adopted the attitude of “every one for themselves.” Why? It shows the true selfishness of the human race. Humans do not like to be told what to do, especially if it changes their lifestyle. We don’t like masks, temperature taking, and continually wiping down surfaces, stepping six feet away instead of going in for an infectious hug, treating all people as if they might give us cooties. That was a playground game, we critically and sarcastically remark, not real life, Lord! We don’t like this, not at all!
What is going on, Lord? COVID 19, the enemy virus, is causing us to be enemies of each other! It happens in our families, work and in our churches. We are divided over the smallest disagreements. We accuse each other of not having enough faith which is a scary place to walk and is not what Jesus said about judging. We walk in on a situation and judge it not to be right immediately without knowing the thinking behind it.
We think less of each other when some do what we are asked to do as safety precautions are put into place and others independently refuse. “Long enough, God” we impatiently cry out. “When WILL this end?”, we say to God. When we don’t get an answer quickly, (or get the answer we want), we complain and ask the same of those trying to create a plan of action in obedience. Our anxious thoughts are leading us to anger. Anger is turning our hearts, minds and souls away from a healthy fear and awe of God, who is not surprised by our current situation, and IS and always will be present with us to help us. He is our rescue, our help, our very life!
A healthy fear of God, our Father, is to run to Him for help, like David. It is listening to Him with readiness to serve Him as He directs, to walk in His ways, to love like He loves no matter what is before us for this day. It is asking for HIS wisdom daily. It is obeying God by obeying our authorities in government, work and in our homes with wisdom, insight and understanding, not hatred and rebellion.
Friends, troubles will never end in this world. There will be always be wars and rumors of wars, pandemics, and more. Remember, Jesus warned us about this. Jesus told his disciples and us, “In this world you WILL have troubles”. But He finished that statement with a promise that builds our confidence and hope, “I(Jesus) have overcome the world”. Jesus, my rescue, my life. Staying close to Jesus, hearing His voice above all others, and trusting in Him for all of life is the answer.
“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” –Jesus in John 16:33
Instead of asking, “How long, O God?”, let us prayerfully ask “God, what are you teaching us in this situation?” “Help me to learn from my present circumstance.” “What do you want from me today?” “How can I help others get through this present trouble knowing what I know about You and what you have taught me?” We might add, “Heavenly Father, let us be watchful and thankful for how you will use a bad situation for your glory, for our growing and maturing, so that the world will know that you are God! A powerful closing to our prayer, “Lord, I know you have overcome as you always have and always will. I trust You.”
Do we really believe what we believe about God is really real?
The answer will be shown in our life, lived for God…or not. Love of God in us will shine brightly in our love for His people. Love God. Love Others. THIS is the revolutionary life.
Worship and Wisdom, Psalms and Proverbs
Psalm 13, The Message
A David Psalm
1-2 Long enough, God—
you’ve ignored me long enough.
I’ve looked at the back of your head
long enough. Long enough
I’ve carried this ton of trouble,
lived with a stomach full of pain.
Long enough my arrogant enemies
have looked down their noses at me.
3-4 Take a good look at me, God, my God;
I want to look life in the eye,
So no enemy can get the best of me
or laugh when I fall on my face.
5-6 I’ve thrown myself headlong into your arms—
I’m celebrating your rescue.
I’m singing at the top of my lungs,
I’m so full of answered prayers.
TRUTH: I’ve thrown myself headlong into your arms—I’m celebrating your rescue.
Proverb 9, The Message
1-6 Lady Wisdom has built and furnished her home;
it’s supported by seven hewn timbers.
The banquet meal is ready to be served: lamb roasted,
wine poured out, table set with silver and flowers.
Having dismissed her serving maids,
Lady Wisdom goes to town, stands in a prominent place,
and invites everyone within sound of her voice:
“Are you confused about life, don’t know what’s going on?
Come with me, oh come, have dinner with me!
I’ve prepared a wonderful spread—fresh-baked bread,
roast lamb, carefully selected wines.
Leave your impoverished confusion and live!
Walk up the street to a life with meaning.”
7-12 If you reason with an arrogant cynic, you’ll get slapped in the face;
confront bad behavior and get a kick in the shins.
So don’t waste your time on a scoffer;
all you’ll get for your pains is abuse.
But if you correct those who care about life,
that’s different—they’ll love you for it!
Save your breath for the wise—they’ll be wiser for it;
tell good people what you know—they’ll profit from it.
Skilled living gets its start in the Fear-of-God,
insight into life from knowing a Holy God.
It’s through me, Lady Wisdom, that your life deepens,
and the years of your life ripen.
Live wisely and wisdom will permeate your life;
mock life and life will mock you.
WISDOM: Skilled living gets its start in the Fear-of-God, insight into life from knowing a Holy God. You are my life!
We are thankful and eternally grateful for all you have done, are doing and will do in our lives here as we prepare for life there with you someday. We praise you for always being at work, in control, always present, with each one of us on your mind. You know us. You know how we think and behave and yet you love us still. Thank you for saving us. Thank you for rescuing us from our selfish thinking. Thank you for overcoming this world, dear Jesus, and overcoming the enemy, the real enemy, daily. Continue to transform me to be all you created me to be. Help me to love like you love even when it’s hard. You are God and I am not. I need you every hour.
In Jesus Name, Amen