Wait, Wait

Lamentations 3: 25

The Lord is good to those who wait for Him, to the person who seeks Him.

I did an interview in the spring about my book Journey Through the Bible. Since the book is a day by day sojourn through every book of the Bible the interviewer asked me if there were any particular books that I did not look forward to as much as others. I will have to say that the book of Lamentations is not up there with Isaiah on the list of Bible books I migrate towards. None the less, one of the insights that I believe is gleaned from the Journey Through the Bible is that every single book of the Bible has great wisdom and inspiration for today. Just look at this golden nugget hidden away in Lamentations. For the full interview please visit, http://www.christianbookshow.com/interviews/journey-through-the-bible.

Yesterday we read Psalm 40, verses 1- 4. The passage begins with, “I waited patiently for the Lord; and He inclined to me.” Couple that with “The Lord is good to those who wait for Him,” and you have a powerful insight. Those who have been reading the Word of the Day for a while have come to know that there is substantial benefit to those who seek God. Certainly that is a part of today’s message, but we are also learning that waiting for God has benefits.

So many times I have gotten out in front of God. That never works. There has been an entire category of transformation in my life which is about letting God do the heavy lifting. In other words, we can work with God in our daily lives so that He is actually making things happen while we do the praying and whatever else He directs. At the root of getting in front of God is a profound lack of trust. In my case, I didn’t really believe down in my heart that God was a proactive, everyday, involved kind of Father. Therefore, my response to situations, even after praying, was to throw the full force of my personality and effort into accomplishing everything in my own strength. Now I recognize that as spiritual immaturity but that is where I was. Reading a passage like today’s verse encourages me, as I hope it does you, to have more patience and to trust God.

Remember the old saying, “Good things come to those who wait”? Who knew that was biblical? So take a deep breath; brew yourself a cup of coffee, sit down and relax. Talk to your father and allow Him to speak to your situation. Wait on Him and good things will come to you.

The Good Shepherd

Psalm 23: 2

He makes me lie down in green pastures; he leads me beside quiet waters.
Do you notice that Jesus doesn’t lead us into valleys of destruction? He leads us to mountain tops and to green pastures. We get the crazed notion, sometimes, that God is leading us into the storms. Nope, He is trying to lead you out of the storm. He is there helping you out of the trials and tribulations. He always leads you to the light.
David wrote in verse four that even though he, David, walks through the valley of the shadow of death he would not fear because his shepherd, Jesus, would keep him. Interestingly enough, David wasn’t pitching a tent in the valley of the shadow of death. He was walking through. Challenges sometimes come but Jesus is there to lead you out and he will keep you safe in the interim.

The Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit are all leading us to quiet green pastures where there is plenty of food and cool, clear water. All things are good where they lead us. There is always plenty. Just follow your shepherd.

Grace and Glory

Psalm 84: 11

For the Lord God is a sun and shield; the Lord gives grace and glory; no good thing does He withhold from those who walk uprightly.

There is much substance in that small verse. Our Father, God, is all things to us. Is that not enough, that He is all things to us including our sunshine and protection? For Him it is not. He then gives to us all good things. All of us who choose to be called his own; that is. He even gives to us grace and glory. Didn’t you think that glory was reserved for Him? It is not. We are to give Him glory but he also gives His glory to us. Not only does His grace cover us, we all have heard that and accept it but he actually gives us His grace. Now what do you suppose we are to do with his grace? Spread it to others perhaps. Even as He has given all good things to us, let us give good things unto others. As we become more and more like Him, this will become our very nature too. And while you give good things to men, don’t forget to spread around a bit of that grace God gave you.

Wants Fulfilled

Psalm 34: 10                    Index Card 3

But they who seek the Lord shall not be in want of any good thing.

Jesus said he came to earth to bring us abundant life (John 10: 10). That implies, doesn’t it, that he wants to fill our lives with good things? So, these two verses (and many others) work together. Jesus wants to pour good things into our lives so he had his prophet teach us to seek him. Didn’t Jesus say it himself during his days on the earth?  “Seek and you shall find” (Matthew 7: 8).

In him is everything pertaining to life (2 Peter 1: 3). Now, if I told you that I had a million dollars for you, you would seek me out, wouldn’t you? Essentially that is our position with Christ. He has it all, he wants to give it to you, you just need to go see him to get everything you want, everything you need. You shall not be in want of any good thing. That’s simple, isn’t it?

Say It!

Psalm 107: 2

Let the redeemed of the Lord say so.

So, my question is, what is it that the redeemed of the Lord are supposed to say. We have to look at verse one for the answer: “Oh give thanks to the Lord, for He is good; for His lovingkindness is everlasting.” That is what the redeemed of the Lord are supposed to be saying. You know what I hear often though? I hear things like “God gave me this cancer to make me strong” or “God took my loved one to heaven”. That is deception folks. God is all goodness. His expression is always lovingkindness (loving + kindness). He only gives that which is good. In fact, he doesn’t even have bad stuff in heaven to give to people. “For everything created by God is good” (1 Timothy 4: 4). Heaven is filled with goodness. That makes sense, right?

When bad things happen, they are not authored by God. God isn’t giving and taking away. He is giving. “God so loved the world that he gave” (John 3: 16). We need to get our language in synch with God’s Word. “Oh give thanks to the Lord, for He is good.” Amen!! God is good. Even little children know that. “God is great, God is good . . . .” Let us, each and everyone, allow the truth of God’s goodness to fill us even at the sub-atomic level. God is good and we say so!

The Good Father

Romans 8: 32

He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give us all things?

God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son (John 3:16). What will he not give us now that He has given us His best? Sometimes people have difficulty grasping that Father God is interested in every single aspect of their lives and furthermore that He is willing to help them in all things. But this verse really brings home to us the message that God is more than willing to do all things for you. He is more than willing to give to you all the things you need or want. After all, he sent His only son so that we could be reconciled unto Him. Certainly he did not do that only to remain estranged and far removed from us. No. He has called us into the kingdom of His dear Son so that we can be one with him. He wants to be a good father to us. He will certainly give us all these other things; things we need, things we want. We just seek Him and he adds all the other things so that we never even have to go after them for ourselves. Save your energy. Do not strive for your needs or desires of your heart. After all, He has already provided for your eternal life and blessing. Will he not provide for you in this life too? Will he give you His very best and then withhold the lesser part? I don’t think so. He gives freely and not sparingly to those who love Him.