Daily D – Psalm 4:4-5
Psalm 4:4, 5 Tremble and do not sin; when you are on your beds, search your hearts and be silent. Offer the sacrifices of the righteous and trust in the LORD. (NIV)
Think about it overnight and remain silent.
Keep your mouth shut, and let your heart do the talking.
Build your case before God and wait for his verdict.
Job and Psalms stand next to one another in our Bibles. If you read the first three chapters of Job and the first five psalms, you see some common ground Job and David each walked. They both knew problems of unusual size and scope. And no, that is not a Goliath joke. Some problems are bigger than individual giants with bad breath and worse moods.
Job loses just about everything dear and precious to him in chapter 1. David’s own son seeks to overthrow him in Psalm 3. Job loses his health in chapter 2. David is deeply distressed in Psalms 4 and 5. It is almost impossible to sleep because of what people are saying and doing.
The bottom line for Job in chapter 1 is this:
and naked I will depart.
The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away;
may the name of the LORD be praised.”
The bottom line for David in Psalm 4:8 is this:
for you alone, LORD,
make me dwell in safety.
One thing is truer than true:
God is good.
All the time.
All the time.
God is good.
A jailbird apostle put it like this:
who have been called according to his purpose.
God is good all the time.
Life is not always good.
God works for the good of those who love him.
Not everything that is good feels good.
Is today a hard day?
Job was blameless and upright; he feared God and shunned evil, (Job 1:1). “He was the greatest man among all the people of the East,” (verse 3).
Job was blameless, upright, and the GOAT (Greatest Of All Time).
King David was a man after God’s heart (1 Samuel 13:14; Acts 13:22).
The Apostle Paul was God’s “chosen instrument to carry my name before the Gentiles and their kings and before the people of Israel,” (Acts 9:15). Don’t miss verse 16: “I will show him how much he must suffer for my name.”
When Paul looked back years later, he wrote 2 Corinthians 6:3-10. Check it out. There is a lot of hard stuff there.
Hard times come to us all. Job, David, and Paul knew the lowest of lows, the hardest of hard times. Job, David, and Paul are also three of the most joyful people who ever lived. How can this be?
They loved God.
They were called to and lived out his purpose for their lives.
God worked all things together for their good.
God can do more good with our hard times than we will ever achieve through smooth sailing and leisurely pursuits.
Don’t go looking for hard times, they will find you in due course.
Do go looking for God in all things at all times and enjoy the surprise of joy unbound and purpose fulfilled.
I will trust God with all of my heart and not try to figure out everything for myself. I will submit to him and follow his path. (Proverbs 3:5, 6)
Our Father, my Hard Times list does not quite compare with Job’s, David’s, or Paul’s. There is a list, however. Everyone I know has a list. Give us the right perspective on our problems. Empower us to see how they are shaping us into trophies of your grace. When I started asking you to saturate my life, I did not consider there were some things that needed squeezing out so that you could fill me with all that is good, pure, patient, kind, and loving. Thank you for my problems and how they drive me to you. Thank you for your goodness and how it turns stones of stumbling into steps of glory. Amen.
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Daily D – Psalm 143:8-10
Psalm 143:8-10 Let me hear of your unfailing love each morning, for I am trusting you. Show me where to walk, for I give myself to you. Rescue me from my enemies, Lord; I run to you to hide me. Teach me to do your will, for you are my God. May your gracious Spirit lead me forward on a firm footing.
Daily D – Psalm 142:5
Psalm 142:5 Then I pray to you, O Lord. I say, “You are my place of refuge. You are all I really want in life.”
Daily D – Ezra 3:11-13
Ezra 3:11-13 With praise and thanks, they sang this song to the Lord: “He is so good! His faithful love for Israel endures forever!” Then all the people gave a great shout, praising the Lord because the foundation of the Lord’s Temple had been laid. But many of the older priests, Levites, and other leaders who had seen the first Temple wept aloud when they saw the new Temple’s foundation. The others, however, were shouting for joy. The joyful shouting and weeping mingled together in a loud noise that could be heard far in the distance.
Daily D – 2 Chronicles 35:22-25
2 Chronicles 35:22-25 After Josiah had finished restoring the Temple, King Neco of Egypt led his army up from Egypt to do battle at Carchemish on the Euphrates River, and Josiah and his army marched out to fight him. But King Neco sent messengers to Josiah with this message: “What do you want with me, king of Judah? I have no quarrel with you today! I am on my way to fight another nation, and God has told me to hurry! Do not interfere with God, who is with me, or he will destroy you.” But Josiah refused to listen to Neco, to whom God had indeed spoken, and he would not turn back. Instead, he disguised himself and led his army into battle on the plain of Megiddo. But the enemy archers hit King Josiah with their arrows and wounded him. He cried out to his men, “Take me from the battle, for I am badly wounded!”
Daily D – 2 Chronicles 32:31
2 Chronicles 32:31 However, when ambassadors arrived from Babylon to ask about the remarkable events that had taken place in the land, God withdrew from Hezekiah in order to test him and to see what was really in his heart.