Psalm 86-88 speak to us today and if we allow them to do so, they move us to ask ourselves some serious questions.
This morning: How do you picture God in terms of character? Is he alive, but distant? Good, but mysteriously uncaring? Aware, but erratic? Almighty and so nothing but to be feared? Honestly: what is God like, and to you?
Psalm 86 tells us of one who is unafraid to declare who they believe God is and though their live is filled with pain, such does not diminish their vision of God. “… you, Lord, are a compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness.” (vs. 15)
And so, let us pause and ask our deepest self: do I truly believe God is for me, and not against me, and if so, what is the evidence I present of that with my life and how do I declare it?
Mid-day: Were you “born in Zion?” That is, were your born among the people of God and have not really known a time in your life when you weren’t with them? Do you realize just how privileged, and responsible, you are to have been handed such a blessing?
Psalm 87 is a Zion psalm and it extols the praises of the God who loves his people and love to be near them. Think of it afresh: “The Most High himself” (vs. 5b) is engaged with your life!
Thus, we would do well to ask ourselves: do we genuinely find all our fountains in you, Lord (vs. 7b), or do we take you for granted?
Tonight: What place would God have in your life if wrestled with critical illness throughout your entire life? What if you felt trapped in your body like a nearly blind prisoner for all of your days (vs. 8b-9a)? Would you even be on speaking terms with God? And if you were, what sort of things would you be saying to him? If death stood at your door and wasn’t about to leave (vs. 3,5), what would be going through your mind?
Psalm 88 gives us the perspective of one such person. And as for this one, perhaps they are doing the most remarkable thing of all – they have not given up talking to God and asking him to help them (vs. 1,9,13).
Which should give us all pause to ask ourselves: just how unalloyed and strong is my faith?