After His death, Christ's disciples were heartbroken and terrified. Their Messiah had died. The one they thought was going to save them had died on a cross like a common criminal. All hope had been lost. Their life, their plan, their hopes... everything died with Him.
What could be more encouraging than to know that apart from Christ we are literally nothing? The things we are striving for and hustling for will ultimately fade away like a mist and nothing will remain but the eternal Kingdom of God. Praise the Lord!
It seems that it is more difficult for me to praise God when I don’t have an abundance of good things happening in my life. My mind does not often go to thanksgiving when I don’t see all those little (and big) things to be thankful for.
The songs we sing in worship to God must be explicit in their praise because they are praising a God who deserves to be acknowledged for the ways He has shown grace and love to us. This hymn is a beautiful reminder of the sustaining power and strength of the Lord.
The songs we sing cannot be vague and imprecise because worship cannot be vague and imprecise. We are worshipping a specific person who has saved us in a specific way. Therefore, worship should magnify our view of God by highlighting His characteristics and His work of salvation through Christ.
Hope in God. David proclaims what I would do well to remember – that even if everything around me gives way, even if evil and darkness rule my life, there is still hope because God is unchangeable and steady and unshakeable, “His grace is the ground for unshaken hope” (Spurgeon). Even if you are in a place where you don’t feel God’s love, it does not mean that He is not present. Even if the darkness does not lift, “the darkness is not dark to him” and there is still hope.
It seems like the enemy has tirelessly worked to bring me low and make me believe lies. And I confess, I’ve allowed him to bring me low and I’ve believed the lies. But like firm ground underfoot that can’t be seen through the thickness of low-settled fog, with every step I have been able to rest firmly in the knowledge that He is sure and steadfast.
Find pleasure in Me. Delight in Me as I delight in you. Be satisfied in Me and let your delight in Me overflow in praise. Rest in My love. It is perfect. It is unfailing. It is unconditional. It is a love that will not let you go. And it is enough.
As humans we naturally think that we are so self sufficient and that our faith is something we can manufacture on our own. But it’s not! And praise the Lord for that because there’s no way we can sustain our faith on our own. I try so hard to figure out the secret to resting and trusting the Lord and it’s so simple...
But God loves you…just because he loves you. Not because of you, not because of your righteousness, your personality, your upstanding morals, or your character. He loves you despite your sin and even in the midst of your unfaithfulness. We are so undeserving. It is such a beautiful love! And such a wonderful Lover.
“Remember it is I who orchestrate the events of your life. Don’t try to figure out what is happening. Simply trust Me and thank Me in advance for the good that will come out of it all. I know the plans I have for you, and they are good.” These words came to mind while I was spending time in God's Word recently. They convicted me and challenged me. It's so difficult to let go and allow God to lead.
Tiny little children, they can’t be older than three years old, sitting in the street with their hands cupped, begging for money or food or anything. They stare up at me and smile. I can’t get their faces out of my mind. Walking down the streets of Kabalagala, the “red light district” of the city, I see drunks lying on the side of the street and I see young girls who are most likely forced into prostitution to survive. Walking down the street I look into their eyes and I see so much brokenness, so much pain, I can almost feel it in my own heart.
I woke up my first morning in Africa to roosters crowing, Lugandan shouts, and children’s laughter outside. It was beautiful. Walking outside I was greeted with wonderful hello hugs and beautiful good mornings from precious children. I’ve never received so much love and I didn’t even know them yet! We spent all day getting to know them and playing with them. It was great. Later that night we were upstairs and heard the children’s beautiful voices singing praises to Jesus. We walked downstairs and see them all on their knees praying out loud and crying out to God. It was the most beautiful, genuine worship I’ve ever seen.