I will praise the LORD!
Reading: Psalm 37
Be still before the LORD
and wait patiently for him;
do not fret when people succeed in their ways,
when they carry out their wicked schemes.
Refrain from anger and turn from wrath;
do not fret—it leads only to evil.
For those who are evil will be destroyed,
but those who hope in the LORD will inherit the land.
A little while, and the wicked will be no more;
though you look for them, they will not be found.
But the meek will inherit the land
and enjoy peace and prosperity (NIV).
When I consider this passage from Psalm 37, two thoughts stand out: Be still before the LORD and wait patiently for him and do not fret—it leads only to evil.
My natural tendency is not to wait or be still. I tend to fret and worry and then charge ahead simultaneously in different directions. Trust me; it’s hard to go in different directions at the same time. The end result is usually a bad case of self-inflicted paralysis, which often results in—you guessed it—a renewed bout of fret and worry. When will I learn? When will we learn?
Being still before the LORD requires practice. It is a learned response, not a natural reaction. When we wait for the LORD we show that we trust Him. We know that He has not forgotten us or the problems we face. In every situation He has our best interests in mind, even if we don’t understand the reasons, causes or solutions to our difficulties.
By being still and waiting before the LORD we demonstrate that we don’t have the answer within in ourselves. The answer—the solution—lies in Him. If we wait patiently, He will show us the way. And having waited patiently for Him, we can move forward with confidence when He gives us the green light.
It is quite likely that Jesus had the words of this psalm in mind when he gave these instructions in his Sermon on the Mount: “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?” Matthew 6:25-27.
We are to live in quiet confidence. In this psalm we read this promise, “But the meek will inherit the land and enjoy peace and prosperity.” We can put our trust in the God who stands behind that promise.
Response: LORD God, help me to trust you today. Give me a peaceful heart that I may wait patiently for you even when the storms of life descend. I pray in Jesus’ name. Amen.
Your Turn: Do you tend to fret? Does quiet prayer still your worries?
Reading: Psalm 46
Come and see what the LORD has done,
the desolations he has brought on the earth.
He makes wars cease
to the ends of the earth.
He breaks the bow and shatters the spear;
he burns the shields with fire.
He says, “Be still, and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth.”
The LORD Almighty is with us;
the God of Jacob is our fortress (NIV).
As I sit writing this, it’s Holy Week—a week of contemplation leading to Good Friday—leading to our Savior’s death on the cross. The opening line of this reading from Psalm 46 grabs my attention: Come and see what the LORD has done.
Yes. Come and see what the LORD has done! Come and see what has happened to God’s son. Come and see the desolations he has brought on the earth—the desolations He has brought on the dust-formed bundle of flesh that at birth was laid in a manager. Now he is laid on a cross. He is not wrapped in swaddling clothes. He is stripped naked, pried wide open and nailed to a cross.
Come and see what has happened to him. This is the LORD’s doing. This is the Father’s will. This is the Son’s willing obedience. Now hear the Spirit’s beckoning call, “Come and see what the LORD has done!”
This is what love looks like—not love for God—love for man. God’s love looks like Jesus on the cross. Love looks like a bloody sacrifice, engineered by God, inflicted on God, God come-in-the-flesh. Love looks painful. It looks painful because it gives to the last drop. It calls us near to the last breath. “Come and see what the LORD has done!”
And when you come be still. He says, “Be still, and know that I am God.”
This is not the time to rush. Eve reached for the forbidden fruit. Adam rushed after her. Rushing has brought us this mess—this messed up world—this mess on the cross. Self-centered rushing hurtles us into sin with no thought for tomorrow—no thought for a man on a cross. Instead today, “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.”
Be still. Be still before the cross. He is God. The man on the cross is God. Love has a price, always has a price. It’s written in blood—the Savior’s blood.
Response: LORD God, alter me at the foot of the cross. I need you to change my heart, my life, my attitude. Help me be still before you as I contemplate your love. Amen.
Your Turn: Does the cross have meaning for you?