I love Psalm 46. I love it for so many reasons.
I love that it begins by reminding me HE is my strength when I need it and my refuge when I feel like I can’t go on.
I’ve dealt with a severe allergic reaction on my face that has required Prednisolone to treat. In addition, I’ve seen two different podiatrists for severe foot issues. I use the word severe because both conditions were severe. I’m hoping to avoid foot surgery. Again. After five surgeries, I’ve had enough.
So these verses have special meaning for me today.
The second half of verse one is a favorite of mine. God is a very present help in trouble. I often borrow trouble.
I’m not having to borrow it today though. It’s right here in front of me. How wonderful to know that I don’t have to wait until I have an appointed time with God like I do with the doctors. God’s help is right now. This moment.
No appointment needed.
But it’s verse two and verse ten (my very favorite verse) that got my attention today. Well, actually it gets my attention every day.
Psalm 46:2: “Therefore we will (emphasis mine) not fear……”
Psalm 46:10: ” Be (emphasis mine) still and know that I am God…..”
Do you see the command?
Do you see the imperative?
And it isn’t just these verses. I could write volumes about our personal responsibility in our personal faith journey. It’s everywhere in Scripture from the Patriarchs right through Revelation.
Our faith journey, while totally initiated by God because it is God who first loved us and called us, is totally a partnership with our heavenly father.
Yes, there are times God graciously intervenes on our behalf when we’ve totally abdicated our part. That’s called mercy. But mercy isn’t for forever. Read the Old Testament. And if you think, “Well, we aren’t under the law anymore. Jesus had a different message.”
Well, then, read the New Testament. I mean really read it. Don’t just read the parts that make you feel good, like all the “Jesus loves me” parts but read the parts where Jesus speaks some very hard words to hear.
Remember the woman caught in adultery? I really don’t know how we’ve mangled that story the way we have. Yes, it is about not casting stones against others when we have some things we could be stoned for as well, it’s also about changing our behavior.
He didn’t tell the woman, “Hey, it’s the men’s fault. You are forgiven. Go your merry way and continue to live as you have.”
Jesus instructs the woman to “Quit sinning. Quit the adultery”. And, here’s the thing, we have no idea whether she did or not. But if she didn’t and she came back to Jesus, do you think she would get off so easy? (This is not a discussion as to whether she would be forgiven but remember:
True repentance means we change our behavior.
I’m just like you. There are days I have a good ‘ole talk with myself. I say, “Rebecca, you’ve asked God to help you with this (whatever this is), now what is your part?”
How do I work with God to accomplish what I’ve prayed about? And especially when I pray for loved ones.
My feet—do you think I just pray for them to be healed and don’t ice them, rest them, exercise them, wear the right shoes?
Of course not. I think that would be an insult to God.
How about losing weight? Do I just ask God to help me lose weight and continue to buy the same groceries, eat the same junk, and not exercise?
What would’ve happened the nation of Israel if all Moses did was pray for them instead of obeying God?
I know a number of people who suffer from depression and/or anxiety. They are all Christians. The ones who are managing it and living productive and happy lives (and, yes, that’s possible), are the ones who are taking constructive actions to heal their depression. The ones who aren’t doing so well are merely taking their pills.
Anyway, this post got beyond me a little.
God is refuge and strength. God is our very present help.
Therefore, we will………
So, how do we cooperate with God? Easy. We make a deliberate decision to do so.
God bless and I hope you have a good day.
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