Day 126 reading: Psalms, chapters 89, 96, 100, 101, 105, & 132
Friends, is it all right to admit that sometimes it’s a little difficult to focus, even on the daily, living, breathing Word of God? This evening I am distracted by sore throats and crying and up and down and bathroom breaks and excuse after excuse…and that’s just from one of our five children… Focus, Marilyn….think happy, calm thoughts…
The heavens praise your wonders, O Lord, your faithfulness too, in the assembly of the holy ones.
For who in the skies above can compare with the Lord?
Who is like the Lord among the heavenly beings?
In the council of the holy ones God is greatly feared; he is more awesome than all who surround him. (89:5-7, NIV)
I am so grateful to serve a loving, caring, just God. He is judge and jury, but He is fair, whether we like to accept it in our own human boundaries, or not. Righteous and justice are the foundation of your throne; love and faithfulness go before you. (89:14, NIV) I love this, though.
A little later in the reading, we are told that even when we mess up, even when we forsake His laws, even when we violate His decrees, even when we fail to keep His commandments, but I will not take my love from him (US!), nor will I ever betray my faithfulness. I will not violate my covenant or alter what my lips have uttered. (89:33-34, NIV) He remembers his covenant forever, the word he commanded, for a thousand generations. (105, 8, NIV)
Friends, it is refreshing to me that my God loves me as a father. He truly loves me like I love my own children. No matter how many times they mess up (or get out of bed long past bed time), I will punish but I will not remove my love from them and He will not ever stop loving you and I.
Isn’t it amazing how the scriptures open themselves up to us at exactly the time we need them most. My own heart is gushing with love after reading that, even sitting and stewing in my parenting frustrations (and still hearing the occasional scamper of tiny feet through the house).
He will judge the people with equity. (96:10, NASB)
I know I have expressed my complete dislike of televisions here before, but I have to get on that bandwagon–briefly–here again.
When I hear or read the word “idol” I don’t think of the music reality TV show, or golden calves, or money, or mansions on the hill; I think of the television first and foremost. It just may be the most distracting thing in my life and certainly the distraction that never adds but only takes. Sure, the occasional family movie is fun sitting around the living room, but that rarely happens at our house. I have a few television shows that I watch, but for the most part I have little use for the TV, and the shows I watch aren’t of any great importance to my quality of life, either. But in our house there are televisions in every room except the bathrooms and at least two are on at all waking hours. It drives me absolutely bonkers! It doesn’t bother my husband; he’s the one who turns them all on. And it’s not the TV’s fault or my husband’s fault, even, that I have such a grudge against television.
My BIG issue is that if it’s on and I’m in the room, I can’t keep from staring at it. I will stop dead in my tracks and stare at whatever is flashing up on the screen. Commercials. Sci Fi. News. Weather. Sports. I really don’t care, it’s not the show itself, it’s the IDOL. It angers me that I can’t ignore the television like my husband does. For him, it’s background noise (and I won’t go into the theories I have about people who can’t just be in silence…ever). For me, it’s like a magnet drawing my eyes in. So, I do my best to stay away from rooms where there is a television on, lest I become a human statue.
For great is the Lord and greatly to be praised; He is to be feared above all gods.
For all the gods of the peoples are idols, but the Lord made the heavens.
Splendor and majesty are before Him, strength and beauty are in His sanctuary. (96:4-6, NASB)
As idiotic as my TV idol is, this is the effect idols have on us and it is up to you and I to keep ourselves from the temptation.
I will walk in my house with blameless heart; I will set before my eyes no vile thing. (101:2-3, NIV)
I do my best to stay out of rooms if there is a television on. What do we do to combat other idols in our lives? How do we quench the ever-growing thirst for more and more…money, possessions, idols?
Worship the Lord in holy attire; Tremble before Him, all the earth. (96:9, NASB)
P.S. “holy attire” doesn’t give you permission to go out on an over-the-top shopping spree!
Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise; be thankful unto him, and bless his name. (100:4, KJV)
Praise Him! Be thankful and–dare I say–content with all that He has already blessed you and I with. Like a parent, He does not have to give us the things we want, He does so out of His love for us when our desires and His path merge. Just like those parents among us do for our children, there is method to His seeming madness, too. There is justice in His punishment. There is righteousness to be found in our obedience.
God is the ultimate artist; His work is showcased every day in the big and small things.
Every morning I will put to silence all the wicked in the land. (101:8, NIV)
Isn’t that beautiful? What a wonderful verse and thought: not only should we start our morning with prayer and thanksgiving, but every morning we should put to silence all the wicked in the land.
Silence the gossip and terror and bad reports in our own heads and look at each day as a completely new day and a completely fresh start.
Ahhhh. I’m feeling more relaxed and more thankful already (even though there are STILL footsteps around the house…)!
Make it a great day,
Day 127 reading: 2 Samuel, chapter 7; 1 Chronicles, chapter 17