Psalm 77. Let’s Review This Thing Once More.


Today’s Lectio Divina: Excerpts from Psalm 77. (MsgB)

An Asaph Psalm.

Will the Lord walk off and leave us for good?
Will He never smile again? Is His love worn threadbare?
Has His salvation promise burned out?
Has God forgotten His manners? Has He angrily stalked off and left us?
“Just my luck,” I said. “The High God goes out of business just the moment I need Him.”

Once again I’ll go over what God has done, lay out on the table the ancient wonders;
I’ll ponder all the things You’ve accomplished, and give a long, loving look at Your acts.


Let’s face it, my friends.

There are days in the life of a Christian when it truly seems to us that the Almighty took a left turn at the last intersection while I took a right.

Days when, as Asaph sings here in Psalm 77, when Yahweh has apparently gone out of business just the moment I step up to buy lunch at His hot dog stand.

Sorry, sir. No dogs today. The store is closed. Come back tomorrow.

Seasons in life when God never seems to crack a smile. His love worn out like an old sweater. His salvation promise just a distant whisper.

But wait.

If my Bible speaks of such days, painful as they are, I’m thankful that this same Holy Book also gives me a strong word for what my response should be when I hit days when all roads to God are blocked.

Asaph sings out the answer. Sweet and clear.

Once again I’ll go over what God has done, lay out on the table the ancient wonders;
I’ll ponder all the things You’ve accomplished, and give a long, loving look at Your acts.

As I see it, rather than stalk off angry that God isn’t conducting business with me today, I can choose to just sit down at the nearest table, pull out my history books, and begin reviewing for myself the track record God has charted for Himself over the last five thousand years.

Let’s see. Where do I begin?

Hmm.

In the beginning, in the Garden…there is God, acting on our behalf.

In the midst of Father Abraham’s wanderings…there is God, acting on our behalf.

In the midst of slavery and suffering in Egypt…there is God, acting on our behalf.

In the midst of sin and stupidity by God’s people…there is God, acting on our behalf.

In the midst of the manger in Bethlehem…there is God, acting on our behalf.

In the midst of Jesus’ three-year ministry…there is God, acting on our behalf.

In the midst of the Cross on Calvary…there is God, acting on our behalf.

In the midst of 2,000 years of doing church poorly…there is God, acting on our behalf.

In the midst of end-time tribulations…there is God, acting on our behalf.

In the midst of eternity in heaven… there is God, acting on our behalf.

OK. I think that covers the Bible…now let’s personalize my history lesson.

In the midst of my birth…there is God, acting on my behalf.

In the midst of my goofy youth years…there is God, acting on my behalf.

In the midst of my life’s past victories…there is God, acting on my behalf.

In the midst of my life’s past struggles…there is God, acting on my behalf.

In the midst of my future unknown…there is God, acting on my behalf.

In the midst of my future death and dying…there is God, acting on my behalf.

Hmm. Is it just my imagination, or is a pattern developing here?

I guess, as I sit here at God’s hot dog stand, wondering why I couldn’t buy my lunch today, I can conclude, based on what I’ve just reviewed, that God has not gone out of business. Hey, I know! Maybe He’s just out buying mustard for my next sandwich.

Wow! What a difference it makes to just sit down, like Asaph suggests, and review the mighty works of God. And as they say, if history is any indicator of the future, I’m guessing God will come through in my life…just in time!

Hallelujah!

Thanks, Asaph, I needed that reminder today!

My prayer: Thank You, God, for Your Word that brings excellent counsel to me on days when it seems like You are a million miles away. In truth, You are never distant, nor have You ever forsaken me. I choose, based on Your past history, to believe that You are near, even when today’s circumstances around me tell me otherwise. For Your name’s sake. Amen.

My questions to ponder: When was the last time I actually took the time to go over what God has done in my life, laying out on the table His ancient wonders? When was the last time I took an extra moment or two to ponder all the things God has accomplished, giving a long, loving look at the acts of God in my life?

So what is God speaking to you today as you ponder the Psalms?


Over a 50-week period, you and I will take a deeper look at The Psalms: God’s Songbook of Prayers. In order to keep all the blog sessions organized, we suggest you bookmark our Contemplating the Psalms home page for ease of use. Keep in mind that one of the best ways to explore the on-going applications of this blog series is to walk alongside a biblically-based, Christ-centered spiritual director who is familiar with how to make material like this part of your overall spiritual formation in God. Many of our directors in our Sustainable Faith-Heartland network are available to companion you in your journey with Jesus. Click here for more info.

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