Loving Lord God, I thank You that Jesus died so that I may know I am loved and forgiven.
Read Psalm 37:1-40
 Of David.
Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. All rights reserved throughout the world. Used by permission of International Bible Society.
What is your greatest cause of frustration? Bring it to God and ask for a godly perspective on it.
Surveys trace the sad outflow from the church of those who have become disillusioned. Disaffection with the church itself, frustration with God and skepticism about faith are all too common. Some are distracted by those around them; knocked off course by superficial comparison with unbelievers that drain energy from remaining true to God. It is this tussle of perceptions that underlies today’s psalm. Wrongdoers seem to get away with it, sometimes prospering through evil (35), unperturbed by thoughts of divine intervention. That can make us envious (1), anxious (1,8), impatient (7) or angry (8). I suppose all of us have experienced one or more of these emotions in response to drug barons living in luxury or tyrannical rulers suppressing their poverty-stricken citizens from the splendid isolation of their air-conditioned palaces. It’s wrong; but is it permanent?
David plainly recognizes the potential for believers to be sapped of faith by living in an unfair world. If we learn from his approach, we will not pretend that we sail through life unaffected by inequalities and injustices, or temptations to unbelief. However, we will primarily focus on the transitory nature of evil and true inheritance. The poet Douglas Dunn, reflecting on idolized race car drivers, reminds us that “their cars [will be] pressed into squares of scrap!” That captures the psalmist’s thesis, which reflects that evil people will be destroyed (9,22,28,34,38). Their glory inevitably fades; whereas those who trust the Lord gain a lasting inheritance (9,11,18,22,29, and 34). The “land,” with all its resonances of home, rest and permanence (e.g. Gen. 13:14-17; 2 Sam. 7:10,11; Heb. 3:7 – 4:11), is reserved for those who keep on trusting the unseen God. Despite what immediate circumstances might suggest, history and spiritual insight tell us he is neither blind nor deaf.
Who do you know whose faith is being tested by envy, anxiety, impatience or anger? What can you draw from the psalm to pray for or share with them?
Gracious Father, cultural attitudes constantly press in on me. Forgive me that I so easily absorb them when in my heart, I want to seek first You and Your Kingdom.
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