Posts Tagged With: Psalm

Busyness

Stop Glorifying Busy

We live in a culture where busyness is glorified. Whenever we ask someone how they are, often instead of answering with how they are feeling, they tell you how busy they are. We fill every minute of every day with things to do. Our to do lists grow and grow, but does it come at the cost of growing in our faith?

The antidote to busyness is stillness. No where in Scripture does it tell us to be busy, but it does tell us to be still.

Psalm 46:10

“Be still, and know that I am God.
    I will be exalted among the nations,
    I will be exalted in the earth!”

In order for us to come to know God, we need to be still. We cannot hear what He has to say to us if we are constantly in motion. We will miss what He has for us if we don’t spend time with Him.

Being still is a challenge for us. We don’t even wait without doing something. What do you do when you find yourself waiting in line, waiting at a doctor’s office or waiting for someone to arrive? Do you allow yourself the gift of a few minutes of stillness or do you fill those minutes by looking at your email, Facebook, Twitter, or playing a game on your phone or other electronic device?

Perhaps if we took those opportunities when we find ourselves waiting to be still before the Lord, we might grow closer to Him. Waiting requires patience, and patience is not something that comes naturally to us. The Lord calls us to be still and to wait patiently.

Psalm 37:7

Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him;…

Pay attention to how often you say you are busy or hear from others how busy they are this week. Maybe you need to take advantage of the moments of quiet you have and simply be still before the Lord and wait for Him to speak to you, minister to you and reveal to you how He is working in your life.

Combatting the busyness of life is easy – simply be still. Let’s stop glorifying busyness and start glorifying the Lord!

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Waiting on the Lord

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Impatient is a great word to describe what we have become. We live in a world of instant gratification where we are used to getting what we want when we want it. We have so many ways to connect with others instantaneously. We can text, tweet, post a status or message someone on FB or Instagram and we expect an immediate response.

We are not very patient when we have to wait. If someone doesn’t immediately respond to a text or message, we easily become frustrated. Do we feel the same way about the Lord? Do we become frustrated and impatient when we don’t feel like we have heard back from Him on something we are praying about?

J. I. Packer gives a beautiful perspective on this in his book Knowing God. “Wait on the Lord” is a constant refrain in the Psalms, and it is a necessary word, for God often keeps us waiting. He is not in such a hurry as we are, and it is not his way to give more light on the future than we need for action in the present, or to guide us more than one step at a time. When in doubt, do nothing, but continue to wait on God. When action is needed, light will come.”

If you are waiting on the Lord, perhaps instead of feeling frustrated or doubting whether or not He heard you, simply wait. He will reveal to you what He needs you to know or what He needs you to do in His time, not yours.

There is much that can happen in the waiting. The Lord may be developing your dependence upon Him and building your faith. He may be putting things in place ahead of what He needs you to do. He may be waiting on someone else to act in obedience. Whatever the reason is, waiting on the Lord is not a waste of time or merely a holding pattern. There is always a purpose for the waiting and we usually don’t recognize what it is until after the fact, if ever.

Psalm 27:14

Wait for the Lord;
    be strong, and let your heart take courage;
    wait for the Lord!

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Thanking AND Praising

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It is easy for us to thank God for all the many blessings we have in our lives. When we truly understand all we have and all we are is by the grace of God, we can’t help but give Him thanks. But do we do as good of a job of praising Him?

James 1:17

Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.

“Thank” means “to express gratitude, appreciation or acknowledgement to”.1  We are to thank God for all He has provided for us and for the things He has done for us. For example, we thank God for providing us with jobs and food and we thank Him for answering our prayers. God deserves our thanks and we are called to thank Him.

1 Chronicles 16:34

Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;
    for his steadfast love endures forever!

“Praise” means “the act of expressing approval or admiration; commendation; laudation”.1 Praising the Lord is commending Him for who He is. For example, we praise Him that He is Sovereign (in control), never changing, and slow to anger and abounding in love.

I think most of us recognize when God has done something for us like answering a prayer and we give Him thanks. However, I am not so sure we are as good at praising Him simply for WHO He is and not WHAT He’s done for us.

1  Chronicles 16:25

For great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised,
    and he is to be feared above all gods.

We are called to both thank and praise the Lord. Let’s make sure we thank Him for all He has done and continues to do for us as well praise Him for who He is.

Psalm 30:4

Sing praises to the Lord, O you his saints,
    and give thanks to his holy name.

 

 

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Spring has Sprung

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Spring has officially arrived here in Houston. The temperatures are warmer, the sun has been shining and the flowers are beginning to bloom. I look forward to spring coming each year and even more so this year. We have had a longer, colder and drearier winter than usual.

Spring is a time of refreshment, renewal and growth. We are refreshed by the warmer weather and are able to get outside and do things we haven’t been able to do during the winter months. We see grass renewed and turning from brown to green, new plants are planted and new flowers are blooming.

Everywhere you look things seem a little brighter but how about our spiritual lives? Are you experiencing refreshment, renewal and growth? We are in the middle of the season of Lent. Lent is the season of preparation before Easter. It is the 40 days prior to Easter where we are to focus on our relationship the the Lord and reflect on all He has done for us through His suffering and death and it ends with the celebration Easter morning of His resurrections.

In order to fully appreciate and celebrate His resurrection, we need to appreciate what He did for us and spend some time being introspective and reflecting on our own relationship with Christ. Spend some time with the Lord and ask Him to reveal to you ways you could grow closer to Him. Do you need to spend more time in His Word, in prayer or in community? Are there sacrifices you need to make in order to grow closer to the Lord? Do you need to confess your sins and repent?

Let this psalm be your prayer for the next couple of weeks so when Easter comes, you will be able to rejoice and celebrate because your spiritual walk will be refreshed and renewed.

Psalm 51:10

Create in me a clean heart, O God,
    and renew a right spirit within me.

Just as the Lord provides dew and rain to refresh the flowers in the springtime, He will provide you exactly what you need to have your faith refreshed and renewed.

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Rejoice and Be Glad

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Psalm 118:24

This is the day that the Lord has made;
    let us rejoice and be glad in it.

We have a choice every day in how we see our day. Regardless of what the weather is like outside or what you have to do on your calendar, choose to rejoice and be glad. Start your day giving the Lord praise, for He has made this day for us. What we choose to do with it and our attitude as we go throughout the day is up to us.

I choose to start this day rejoicing and being glad that the Lord has made it. It is cold and dreary here in the Houston area with temperatures not getting out of the 40s. I have several meetings to attend and lots of things on my “to do” list. None of that in and of itself is a reason to rejoice, but rejoicing is a choice.

I choose to praise the Lord for this day and to keep my eyes open to what He might have for me today. You never know when you will see God show up in your day or when He will rearrange your day to help you meet your divine appointment. Choose to rejoice in the Lord today and the day He has prepared for you. Keep you eyes and ears open for how He might use you today to bless someone else. Who knows, your attitude my just influence someone around you and they might just see the light of Christ in you through you attitude!

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