Thursday, October 20, 2011

Life is unfair but God is not

Photo by Silo Nos, courtesy of
Hello! I am so glad you've come to A Good Bible Study. We are thick in the process of discovering A Passionate Love: The Relationship between God and You!

There are so many examples of God's passion for you and I in the bible, and just as many encouragements for each of us to delight just as passionately in the Lord. Today we are looking at
Psalm 119:139.

Let me ask you: have you ever felt like you have been unfairly punished?
Have you ever felt like you are trying to do the right thing, your heart is right, but someone only wants to misunderstand your intentions?
Have  you ever been ostracized, left-out, ridiculed or criticized because you want to do what's right, or even because you love God and are following what you believe He wants for your life?

If so, then the Psalms are right up your alley.

David had been chosen as the next King of Israel. This didn't go over very well with the current King, unfortunately. Formerly like a son to King Saul, David was now hunted like an animal across the land. He survived in caves, and from the kindness of those in the kingdom who knew David had only tried to serve Saul well. But Saul only saw David as a threat, even though God first chose Saul as King, too.

The problem was that Saul got a taste of power and decided he didn't need God anymore. Saul was going to do things Saul's way. He figured if he got rid of God's next in line, all of his problems would be solved.

Have you ever noticed that when you are trying to live your life to serve God, even if you don't put any expectations on anyone else, there is always someone who tries to tear you down? Part of the reason is that when we change our behavior, it makes others around us uncomfortable. This can be due to a natural human desire to resist change, or it might be because seeking a higher level of behavior just highlights the negativity in someone else. In their eyes, you're making them look bad.

It's hard to continue to pretend your living a life of integrity, when faced with someone who actually is, you know what I mean?

Saul was only pretending to serve God but David was all in. The people were chanting David's name in the streets because David was out there defending the kingdom, while Saul was sitting at home in a terminal bad mood. David sang and played music praising God, and Saul was sneaking off to visit mediums and witches, pretending God didn't know what he was about. As you can expect, Saul didn't much appreciate David highlighting his own sinfulness. He wanted to get rid of David, so he didn't have to face himself, or God.

Read Psalm 119:139 "My zeal has consumed me, because my enemies have forgotten your words." KJV

 David sings of his zeal (passion) having consumed him because of his anguish at the lack of love his enemies have for God. He wants God to renew his spirit and give him fresh hope in spite of the actions of his enemies meant to discourage and dishearten him.

Barnes Notes say, "My zeal hath consumed me - Margin, "cut me off." The word which is here translated "consumed" is rendered "cut off" "vanish," "destroyed." It means here, that he pined away; that his strength was exhausted; that he was sinking under the efforts which he had put forth as expressive of his deep interest in the cause of God and of truth"

It was breaking David's heart that Saul was trying to kill him, and David hadn't done anything wrong to Saul. David was perfectly willing to serve Saul, love him as a son-in-law and best friend to Saul's son, until God saw fit to remove Saul from the throne. David didn't want any part of hurting Saul, but Saul couldn't see past his own jealousy and envy.

Can you relate? Who can you turn to when even the people you thought loved you the most, praised you the highest, claimed to always be your friend, are the very ones talking behind your back and trying to ruin your life?

David turned to God. David reminded himself of God's love for him, God's strength when David had none left, and God's promise to bring good out of everything terrible going on. Let's follow his example:

Lord, there are things happening to people all over this world that are unfair, that don't make sense. How can it be when we are doing our best to serve you, obey you, and love you, that others don't see our hearts are sincere? Help us to remember that when no one else sees, You see. When no one else is my friend, You are. When I think I am alone, I am not for You are there. In His name, Amen.

Love, Karen

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