Saturday, June 05, 2010

You're a screw up? Great!

You should maybe go get your Bible, cause you don't want to miss this. Or go to this website and look up Psalm 37 (, go ahead....I'll wait.

I was reading in Psalm 37 the other day, and felt led to make a list of all the words that described the righteous man listed there, here's what I found:

Be Still
Do not Fret
Take refuge
Do not Fret

Are you sensing a theme? I was amazed at the lack of words like, strive, work, acquire, be good, etc. I mean, those words were not even in there, then this list made me want to make a list of all the things God said he would do for this person:

Make your righteousness shine like the dawn
Know their days
Make their steps firm
Will not forsake
Will not leave

Are you catching the difference? God does it all. We rest, trust, dwell, and wait. He SAVES! Now, I think we can apply this to our salvation and then somehow forget about it, and start striving in other areas of our lives, thinking that we are now supposed to be appropriately matched against our battles. This is a lie! We are ALWAYS ill-matched on our own, and our God is the one who works out the victory in our lives for his glory.

Think of every great Bible Character, and you will not see heroes who were completely competent, and strong, handsome and witty, ready to meet every challenge with perfect completion and readiness. Not in my Bible at least. My Bible has a laundry list of people who God chose (and he DID choose us if we're believers) to accomplish his purposes, who were completely unable to do it in their own strength. Moses, Joshua, Gideon, David, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, Daniel, Peter, Jehoshaphat, Mary, the Israelites...ALL OF THEM!

He doesn't want people who are competent, he wants people who realize their incompetence and trust in an abundantly competent God. We MUST remember this the next time we are confronted with our lack (which for me, is daily). Surely there is some area where you have currently been made painfully unaware of your insufficiency. Surely there is some battle or foe in your life that seems larger than you and is coming from all sides. Surely there is some area where you start hearing a voice that's saying "You can't do this", or "This is bigger than you". If you have nothing like this in your life, then you're not living life!

Doesn't God allow times like his to deepen our trust and reliance on him. Doesn't he expose of insufficiency and tear away our strength at times so we are forced with the choice of running to a God of refuge who is bountifully strong. In Deuteronomy Moses says to the Israelites,
"The Lord will judge his people and have compassion on his servants when he sees their strength is gone and no one is left, slave or free. He will say "Now where are their gods, the rock they took refuge in, the gods who ate the fat of their sacrifices and drank the wine of their drink offerings? Let them rise to help you! Let them give you shelter! See now that I myself and He!" (Deut. 32:36-39) Right after this Moses tells the people, "These are not just idle words for you, they are your LIFE!" (verse 47).

Do you see that? There is life in recognizing our God will fight these battles for us, and we are not strong enough on our own. I am hoping you are facing something impossible right now. Not so you can have to go through hard things, but so you can see that God allows us to face things that sap our strength and reveal our lack of ability (for me that's just being a wife and mom). And then in light of that insufficiency, you can find life, strength and refuge in a God who is overflowing with power, and wants you near him. In his grace, he exposes the things that we start to put our life, trust and strength in (and often that's our own capability) and lets us scamper from thing to thing trying to find something to put our trust in, till we ultimately realize...the only place to go is God.

He is shelter, he is strength, he is refuge and he is mighty to save. Rest, trust, seek, enjoy, delight.
"As the scripture says, "Anyone who trusts in him will never be put to shame" (Romans 10:11)


robin.sayers said...

AMEN and AMEN! Thank you my dear friend for this wonderful reminder! I have been having such a rough week feeling VERY incompetent in my wife and mother role and this was very encouraging! Tears are flowing, I love you!

Kathy J said...

Jenn!! I didn't know you had a blog. Good stuff! Thanks for the encouraging, much needed reminder!

Rebecca said...

Impeccable timing for this post. It is absolutely true and I needed to be reminded this morning. Thank you for sharing your discoveries and insights! :)

Sandy said...

Thanks! I praise God for the regular doses of encouragement and the great big doses of Him that I experience through the jar of clay named Jenn Schmidt. Love ya!