Sunday, July 3, 2016

Psalm 66

I will come to Your temple with burnt offerings and fulfill my vows to you - vows my lips promised and my mouth spoke when I was in trouble.
Psalm 66.13-14

We're no stranger to both the desire and the guilt that comes with crying out to God in times of distress.  Things happen.  We lose control.  We don't know what to do.  And we come before God in both our need and want, feeling the weight that we cannot do this on our own, and also a heavy "sorry I only come when I need You."  And sometimes, we build these promises and commitments "I'll be better at prayer, better at daily devotions, better at setting a Godly example in my lifestyle."  We add worship music to our rotation.  We clean up our language.  We are present at church - physically for some, mentally for us all.

And when the peace finally comes, however long it takes, and when the peace becomes familiar, we stand back up, we walk forward, we gain back our confidence.  And we gain back out belief that we are strong enough and have the clarity to take control again.

The cycle continues.  We're no stranger to it.

God in His mercy cannot abandon us, He comes to our rescue, He comforts us.  But He never does it because we've made these promises.  In His love, He would have exemplified His fatherly compassion without precedent.  But it's those promises.  The ones that WE make.  The ones that prove how finicky we are in our commitment, how fleeting is our trust in the one who is unseen.

If only we could hold up our bargain! If only we understood the relationship dynamic of being in communion with God.  If only we realized the weight of our vows, and knew how unfaithful we are, making promises we only intended to keep, and never set out to do.  If only we saw the immeasurable forgiveness God has for souls like ours, the way His love is so relentless to our casual hearts.

Come and listen, all you who fear God; let me tell you what He has done for me.
I cried out to Him with my mouth; His praise was on my tongue.
If I had cherished sin in my heart, the Lord would not have listened;
but God has surely listened and heard my voice in prayer.
Praise be to God, who has not rejected my prayer
or withheld His love from me!
Psalm 66.16-20


currently reading: Scary Close by Donald Miller
currently listening: Laura Mvula with Metropole Orkest by Laura Mvula

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