29 December 2014
“The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.” Psalm 34:18
There are times when we feel defeated. Whether we are defeated by our own lack or defeated because of circumstances – the sense of being defeated can crush our spirit and even break our will. We blame ourselves, despise our weakness or hate others or the world for how unfair things have turned out. But that is exactly where the enemy wants us to be.
Whether we choose to seek the counsel of friends, or the counsel of self-help books and other techniques, there is nothing that can replace or surpass the wisdom and comfort of turning to God. And God promises that he is close to the brokenhearted and crushed in spirit. He does not blame or add salt to injury as we may do to ourselves. He is not there to point fingers and exacerbate guilt.
He is there to identify specifically what we need to learn and change because of his wisdom.. He is there most importantly to be close and save us from our crushed spirit because he knows the dangers it can lead to if not attended to quickly. Jesus didn’t cause sinners to feel more like sinners, he gave them hope of a new beginning and a new possibility. He gave them resolve to do better.
Lord God, forgive me for my failings, my short-comings and my sinfulness. In your wisdom show me what i need to change and what i need to learn to do differently. Teach me Lord so that i may learn from my mistakes. Give me the resolve in your Holy Spirit and strengthen this resolve in me to do better. Thank you Lord, for i know that you are with me and for me.
28 December 2014
“”Your servant has killed both lion and bear; and this uncircumcised Philistine will be like one of them, seeing he has defied the armies of the living God.” Moreover David said, “The Lord, who delivered me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear, He will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine.”” 1 Samuel 17:36-37
As a young boy, King David was already confident in the Lord. Even before King David had his own army and whilst he was just a shepherd boy, his confidence and strength exceeded the armies that stood against Israel.
Yet, as King David grew in stature and power, having vast armies fighting with him and for him, he started counting the number of his men and momentarily looked away from God. King David began to see his strength in men rather than God. He began to do things for his own glory and gain rather than for God.
We all slip up and commit the same mistakes. Even if we haven’t, we cannot be complacent about it as even King David – as impressive a man of God he is, was overcome by temptation before. We too will experience the same tests and trials. We too may fail. A wise friend told me to repeatedly ask myself as often as i can remember to – “Why?”, Why are we doing what we are doing? Why are we thinking the way we do. Why are we acting the way we do. Why and for whom?
Father, i acknowledge i don’t always do things for you but do a mixture of things for you and me. More often than not, i do things for myself. I’m sorry Lord, forgive me and help me to focus on why and whom i do things for. When i start to think wayward, prompt me by the Holy Spirit to ask why? For whom? And may i be found in you – may i refrain from acting selfishly or out of fear. For if i do things for you, i have nothing to be afraid of like boy David as he confidently declared – “The Lord, who delivered me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear, He will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine“.