June 16, 2011

Today you should read: Psalm 33

I always love the Psalms that start with praise to God. This particular one draws our attention to four of God’s attributes that most certainly deserve our praise. We see God as Creator, sustainer, righteous, and just. As we think about these attributes of God look to see where they are being shown in your own life. Obviously, we can all thank God that He created us and that we are sustained each moment of every day. Where in your life do you see God’s righteousness and justice? Praise Him for it today.

The rest of the Psalm focuses on the fact that God sees and sustains those who revere and honor Him as God. For those who don’t, He judges and will eventually destroy. We cannot best God. His plans will happen and His purposes will be fulfilled. Doesn’t that make you excited and relieved? We should rejoice in the fact that “He who began a good work in you will bring it to completion.” God will finish what He started to bring good to those who love Him. So, who is your “help” and you “shield?” Are you trusting in the “size of your army” or the “horse’s strength?” Is God your shield? Is God your hope? If not, make Him your hope and shield today by trusting and waiting on Him as He reveals the plans He has for you!!

Posted by: Robbie Byrd

June 15, 2011

Today you should read: Psalm 32

Are your bones aching??

Well, here we are in Psalm 32, another classic!! I could live in this Psalm! This is a psalm of thanksgiving! The worshipers are praising and thanking God for their sins being forgiven. Verses 1 – 5 answers the question…”who is truly happy (or blessed)?” And the answer is: those whose sins are forgiven. Verses 6-11 are straight application! Directly from the text! Verse 6 starts with “therefore,” meaning that it is drawing lessons from verses 1-5. Verse 6 is saying let everyone who is godly confess and not wait. And verses 10-11 are application to rejoice in the Lord and be glad!! Because your sins are forgiven!

Today’s “Walk-a-Way”

Are your bones aching? We see in verses 4-5 a personal testimony of forgiveness. A testimony that is so much like ours. You see, God is gracious! He paid for your sins on the cross! He already finished it! But why don’t we live like we are clinging to this glorious truth?

I can’t count the many times when my “bones have been aching.” God’s hand seemed to be “heavy upon me.” Why was that the case? I had not been actively confessing sin and had not rested afterwards in His glorious forgiveness through Christ!!

Forgiveness is the fundamental expression of God’s kindness and mercy toward those who receive His covenant. No one needs to compel God to show mercy; rather, the faithful confess their sins because they believe that He is merciful.

So how about you? Are your bones aching? Have you kept silent? How long has it been since you confessed? Does it feel like your praise is more of a “groan all day long?” Does God’s hand feel like it is heavy upon you? Is your strength dried up? Well, then come to the end of verse 5 of this Psalm. Acknowledge your sin to the Lord. Confess until you can’t confess anymore. You should stay very active in your confession. God has already paid for the sin that you are too scared or too lazy to confess. He already knows about it. He knows you better than you know yourself.

So, confess and repent; and don’t do it anymore. Experience the humility that comes with acknowledging that you have disobeyed and then experience the joy that comes along with the end of verse 5, “You forgave the iniquity of my sin.” Get alone with God, set aside 20 minutes, confess your sins TODAY and then soak in verses 10-11 which are the overflows of a forgiven heart!!

Posted by: Sam Cirrincione

June 14, 2011

Today you should read: Psalm 31

This has been a rough year for many of us all over the world. Japan was devastated by earthquakes and tsunamis, Mississippi, as well as other places, faced floods and Alabama faced massive tornados just to name a few. This is a tough time for so many families and I can’t imagine the sorrow they must feel. I can imagine that many of them are searching for refuge from the grief they face. Where can hope be found?

Psalm 31 points us to the Lord:

“In you, O Lord, do I take refuge; let me never be put to shame; in your righteousness deliver me! Incline your ear to me; rescue me speedily! Be a rock of refuge for me, a strong fortress to save me!” (v.1-2)

David makes it clear that only in the Lord can we take refuge. He is our rock and righteous deliverer. Does this mean that if we place our trust in the Lord we will never face hardships? Absolutely not! In verse 7 David points out that the Lord knows our afflictions and hardships and it is through them that He gives us grace. David is distressed because he is battling adversaries who are trying to kill him, he has persecutors on every side, and even his friends are deserting him (v. 9-13).

It is my prayer that when you face adversity you would run to the Lord and trust in Him. Understand that no matter the situation the purposes of the Lord will prevail.

Meditate today on Psalm 31:23-24:

“Love the Lord, all you his saints! The Lord preserves the faithful but abundantly repays the one who acts in pride. Be strong, and let your heart take courage, all you who wait for the Lord!” Psalm 31:23-24

Posted by: Chad Wiles

June 13, 2011

Today you should read: Psalm 30

Psalm 30 is a dedication song to the Lord, specifically, for the temple that was yet to be built. David, knowing that his son Solomon would have the privilege of building the temple, penned this song because his heart was in the work that the Lord would soon do. After all, David was a pretty integral part of God’s plan for Israel’s arrival to this very moment. Who better to write a song of dedication?

In verse 1, David begins by “extolling” or exalting the Lord. The word used here has a physical connotation to it, similar to lifting something up. Check out a note from one of my study tools:

Physically, this word refers to an object being raised to higher elevation. It often means that a person or object has an elevated status for admirers or worshipers. Often the greatness of the honored object is extolled. It can also refer to God exalting the needy by improving their social or economic status. NLT Study Bible

David was lifting the Lord up, or exalting Him, because of all that the Lord had done for him and for Israel. Verses 1b-3 are the reasons given for extolling his God: (1) deliverance from enemies, (2) hearing his prayer, (3) restoring health, (4) redemption from sin and death. It sounds pretty similar to Exodus 20 and Joshua 24, doesn’t it? God has done great things for us, and the proper responses are worship and devotion.

Verse 4 and 5 call us to sing to the Lord and remember that, while we deal with God’s judgment and consequences from our sin, joy comes soon for those who follow the Lord. Verse 6 reminds us that we would be prideful to think that we can make it on our own apart from God’s providence and sovereign hand. In verses 8-10, David makes a plea to the Lord for His mercy, which is especially fitting since the temple was a sign of mercy to the Israelites. The sacrifice for sin was not their own lives or blood, but in the blood of lambs (ultimately of His Son, the final and perfect Lamb).

This psalm closes with yet another cry of thanksgiving to the Lord, a common theme throughout the whole book. David’s mourning has become dancing, only because the goodness of God.

Church, what are some of your reasons to extol, or “lift up” the Lord today? What thanksgiving can you lay at Jesus’ feet? In the comment section below, let’s praise and thank the Lord for who He is and what He has done in our lives.

Posted by: Todd Thomas