Wednesday, July 22, 2009

The Psalms: Week Five

This past Sunday, Jeff preached on Psalm 40. While I didn't get to hear it due to volunteering in the nursery, so many people had raved about the message that I knew I needed to listen to it. That, and the fact that when I was printing out the connection cards and saw that a Next Step was "Wait patiently on the Lord" and knew that was something I could use help in. Amber and Connie were referencing it all through our walking group yesterday and I felt a little out of the loop. So I listened to it on my way to work today. You, too, can listen to it here.

It was quite an encouraging message. It was all about waiting on the Lord. The focus was on the first four verses.

I waited patiently for the Lord;
he turned to me and heard my cry.

He lifted me out of the slimy pit,
out of the mud and mire;
he set my feet on a rock
and gave me a firm place to stand.

He put a new song in my mouth,
a hymn of praise to our God.
Many will see and fear
and put their trust in the Lord.

Blessed is the man
who makes the Lord his trust

I know that the band played U2's song, "Psalm 40" before the message. John Waller's song "While I'm Waiting" was also played.

I really like that Jeff addressed the question, "What does it mean to wait on the Lord?" That has been one of the questions I've had for quite some time without a helpful answer. (Another one being, "What does it mean to abide in Christ/How does one abide in Christ?") Jeff said that waiting on God involved being obedient to and trusting in Him. He gave us thoughts to consider. Biblical waiting does not mean doing nothing. It's not a way to evade responsibility. We are still supposed to do what we have been called to do. Waiting involves a daily decision to trust and obey God. How can we expect God to convene in our lives if we're not being obedient to him? Waiting patiently is saying that we will trust and obey God even if the circumstances of our lives are not what we want them to be. Even though they may not turn out in the way we would choose, still we are betting everything on God with no plan B. Sometimes waiting is just a painful hanging on.

What does it take to wait well? It requires patient trust. "Will I trust that God has reasons for telling me 'Wait'? Will I trust that God knows what he's doing? Will I remember that God sees things very differently than I do because he sees in the perspective of eternity?"

2 Peter 3:8-9 "But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day. The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance."

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