Hello, my friend. Psalm 42, teaches us how to face the utmost difficulties in life. Psalm 43 just continues to remind us that if God is not our primary delight, we will continue to be vulnerable to great disappointment.
Our Psalm 44 for today is another of those bewilderingly gloomy Psalms. It starts out so well, from vs. 1 through vs. 8. The Psalmist praises God for the wonderful way He blessed His people in the past. He says in that jubilant vs. 3, “It was not by their sword that they won the land, nor did their arm bring them victory; it was Your right hand, Your arm, and the light of Your face, for You loved them.” How could one say it better? He continues in vs. 8, “In God we glory all day long, and we will praise Your name forever.” Isn’t that good? Such a commitment, forever!
Until the very next verse, where he laments in a passage written in a minor key. Hear the litany of defeat in the action words of these verses: rejected, humbled, plundered, scattered, devoured, a nation demoralized and in some ways destroyed. We need to be constantly on the alert of Satan’s devices. When we are in a time of great, powerful joy, we soon will learn that the battle is still engaged, lest we forget. Chuck Swindoll gives a moving message on integrity. He says that God tests His servants in two major ways–through adversity and through prosperity. Or as Oscar Wilde puts it, “In this world there are only two tragedies one is not getting what we want and the other is getting it.” And God permits this so we can stop relying on getting what we want, and begin praising Him for giving us what we need. There are bound to be reversals and disappointments in life, and we can only discover the meaning behind them when we fulfill the instructions in I Thess.5: 16, “Be joyful always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”
And in moments of despair, we often say foolish things. Note that verse 23, “Wake up, Lord. Why do you sleep? Rouse yourself. Do not reject us forever.” As if God ever was not concerned about us. And Psalm 121:2 says so strongly, “My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth. He will not let your foot slip–he who watches over you will neither slumber; indeed, he who watches over Israel will neither slumber nor sleep, the Lord watches over you.” One never knows what the day will bring forth. We need to constantly practice the presence of God. Dr. Edman was President of Wheaton College in my days there, and he often said, “Never forget in the dark what God showed you in the light.” That’s why when the opportunity is at hand to study and devour God’s Word, we should do it NOW.
“Thank you, Lord, for reminding us again of our only source of encouragement. You know us as we are, so often swinging in our emotions, and you teach us and love us just the same. We are so thankful. Bless my friend reading this and all others in special need.”
Thank you, partner, for being along. Cheerio!
These meditations on the Psalms were written by Village Schools of the Bible Founder, Monty Sholund and first published in book form as Monty’s Musings on the Psalms in 2000.