To the sky

By all appearances, things were not going well for David when he wrote this Psalm. He in wartime, and acknowledges that God no longer goes out with his army, as if He has rejected them (v. 11). Yet, he begins the Psalm saying that his heart is steadfast- unshaken (v. 1). He is so overflowing with praise, he will sing and make music with his soul (v. 1). Not only that, but David is certain of singing and making music among peoples and nations (v. 3).

Why?

Because of God’s great love and faithfulness.

God’s love is no small matter. I wonder how often I feel that it is, though. Maybe at times when I doubt that it will last. When I doubt it is abounding toward me. When I keep it tucked away for my personal consolation and neglect to tell of it to others. Maybe when I assume on it so that I forget to praise God for it.

But surely it is a great love that makes a way for salvation. A great love that died so that a cursed one might become a beloved child. A great love that holds on through life and death, sickness and health, demonic opposition and temptation. A great love that is enough to supply every need. A great love that endures forever.

God’s great love should elicit songs, in even the most troubled times. His great love has power to hold a heart steadfast.

Likewise, David’s heart could be steadfast because God himself is faithful. He does not change and His Word does not fail. His abundant faithfulness means He is a steady, unchanging hope and refuge. Faithfulness permeates all His mercies and judgements.

May David’s refrain resound often in my heart so that, like him, my soul will sing and my mouth speak of God’s love and faithfulness to the nations.

Always True

In a world so full of discord, hate, falsehood, sickness, ruin, and death, I am thankful for a week to remember what is true and what will prevail in the end: peace, love, faith, joy, hope, and belief.

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”

John 3:16

“For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God”

Ephesians 2:8

“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead”

1 Peter 1:3

Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved

Acts 16:31

“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.”

John 14:27

“I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete.”

John 15:11

#happyeaster

#alwaystrue

Fellowship and Joy

“May our fellowship with the Father and with His Son, Jesus Christ, be unquestionable. May it be fuel. May it fill us with joy. May it be a most real fact this day. May we enjoy it to the full, knowing whom we have believed, knowing who is our Father, knowing who it is that dwells in us, even the Holy Spirit.

“Take away from us everything that might hinder our delighting ourselves in God. May we come to God this day with a supreme joy. May we speak of Him as “God, my exceeding joy, my own God is He.”

C.H. Spurgeon

May God grant that each child of His knows Him better today. That they meditate on His Word and hang every hope on Him. That they experience again and in different ways His power to strengthen, satisfy, and comfort.

St. Patrick’s Day: Rifts and Reconciliation

St. Patrick’s Day is a light-hearted celebration day. At least in the States. Everyone wants to be Irish. All the things, clothes, and food are green. Or you’ll get pinched.

I even gave into the spirit of the day. Irish Pandora playing (Chieftains for the win!) while I baked scones donned in a green shirt. My Irish great- uncle would be proud. Or at least amused.

Throughout the day, I’ve been thinking about the more serious, tragic themes of St. Patrick’s story and the reasons behind the green and orange colors: slavery, religious wars, paganism, Patrick’s own animosity to his Creator. These in turn remind me of the rifts I see today. Dissent and polarization in politics, denominations, and even families. Slavery still to be eradicated. Hate-filled wars continue. People still reject their Creator.

But then there are other themes from St. Patrick’s story: Patrick’s reconciliation to God, his forgiveness and missionary work for his former enslavers, freedom from paganism for those who believed in Christ.

Patrick’s story that reminds me of Joseph in the Bible. And Paul. In these stories and more throughout history, God has shown himself powerful to work even in the bleakest, most hopeless situations. And His purposes led to life for his people, even when it seems all is lost.

“As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today.” Genesis‬ ‭50:20‬

“For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans‬ ‭8:38-39‬ ‭

That gives me hope for the rifts today. Hope to pray for reconciliation. Hope that God is still at work. Hope to keep doing the work he gives.

When Anxiety is Great

Whatever anxiety it is that may grip my heart, my Heavenly Father has a consolation to meet it; a beautiful majesty of his character that surpasses any worry. Loneliness is met with his presence. Animosity is met with his love. Guilt and failure are met with his forgiveness and mercy. Weakness is met with his strength. Hard tasks are met with his grace. Decisions are met with his wisdom. Difficult situations are met with his peace. Grief is met with his comfort. Indifference is met with his compassion. Weak faith is met with his abundance. Lies are met with the truth of his Word. All the evil done in the world will be met with judgment. All those who hope in God will be with him forever.

Therefore, little heart, obey his call to “cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.” 1 Peter 5:7

Saturday Song: We have a most glorious King

We have a most glorious King;
The heavens, He says, are His throne;
All worlds are His mighty domain,
All kingdoms His scepter shall own.
He dwells with His people below,
He loves in their trials to share;
We dwell with the King for His work,
His burden we willingly bear.

I’m dwelling with Jesus my King;
I’ve found where He dwells with His own;
I’ve opened the door of my heart;
He’s made it His temple and throne.
Like Mary I sit at His feet,
Like John I recline on His breast;
His presence is fulness of joy,
His bosom is infinite rest.

I dwell with the King for His work,
I’ve part in His glorious plan
To bring in His kingdom to earth
And tell His salvation to man.
The world has its work and rewards,
I count them but folly and loss;
My business is only His work,
My message is only His cross.

I dwell with the King for His work,
The work, it is His and not mine;
He plans and prepares it for me
And fills me with power divine.
So duty is changed to delight,
And prayer into praise as I sing;

I dwell with my King for His work
And work in the strength of my King.
We’ll dwell with the King for His work
And work thru each day of the year.
Perhaps ere it passes, the King
In glory Himself shall appear.
Oh, then in some closer embrace,
Oh, then in some nobler employ
We’ll dwell with the King for His work
In endless, ineffable joy!

Click for video from NYCYPCD