Remember that we are the people you chose long ago,     the tribe you redeemed as your own special possession!     And remember Jerusalem, your home here on earth.

O God, why have you rejected us so long?
    Why is your anger so intense against the sheep of your own pasture?
Remember that we are the people you chose long ago,
    the tribe you redeemed as your own special possession!
    And remember Jerusalem,[b] your home here on earth.
Walk through the awful ruins of the city;
    see how the enemy has destroyed your sanctuary.

There your enemies shouted their victorious battle cries;
    there they set up their battle standards.
They swung their axes
    like woodcutters in a forest.
With axes and picks,
    they smashed the carved paneling.
They burned your sanctuary to the ground.
    They defiled the place that bears your name.
Then they thought, “Let’s destroy everything!”
    So they burned down all the places where God was worshiped.

We no longer see your miraculous signs.
    All the prophets are gone,
    and no one can tell us when it will end.
10 How long, O God, will you allow our enemies to insult you?
    Will you let them dishonor your name forever?
11 Why do you hold back your strong right hand?
    Unleash your powerful fist and destroy them.

12 You, O God, are my king from ages past,
    bringing salvation to the earth.
13 You split the sea by your strength
    and smashed the heads of the sea monsters.
14 You crushed the heads of Leviathan[c]
    and let the desert animals eat him.
15 You caused the springs and streams to gush forth,
    and you dried up rivers that never run dry.
16 Both day and night belong to you;
    you made the starlight[d] and the sun.
17 You set the boundaries of the earth,
    and you made both summer and winter.

18 See how these enemies insult you, Lord.
    A foolish nation has dishonored your name.
19 Don’t let these wild beasts destroy your turtledoves.
    Don’t forget your suffering people forever.

20 Remember your covenant promises,
    for the land is full of darkness and violence!
21 Don’t let the downtrodden be humiliated again.
    Instead, let the poor and needy praise your name.

22 Arise, O God, and defend your cause.
    Remember how these fools insult you all day long.
23 Don’t overlook what your enemies have said
    or their growing uproar.  Psalm 74

The writer of Psalm 74 appeals to the Lord that He would move in their midst.  He reminds the Lord of the covenant that God established with Israel and is asking the Lord to move mightily in their midst.  To bring healing and restoration.  God has given us the opportunity to seek His face and we should never treat it lightly.  He not only hears the prayers of His people but He moves greatly when His people pray.

The writer speaks of the enemy’s battle cry and smashing the sanctuary of the Lord.  The writer is pointing to what the enemy has done is asking the Lord to move because of the wickedness of the enemy.  We today can still pray for the justice and righteousness of God.  But the enemy we face is not flesh and blood.  The enemy we face is a spiritual enemy who is already defeated.  We must remember to fix our eyes upon Jesus in all and every circumstance.

The writer speaks of God’s miraculous power being absent from Israel and the absence of the prophets.  He is asking the Lord to move mightily with His strong right hand.  Many times when we are waiting upon the Lord it can be very difficult.  But God will move in His perfect time and in the waiting He is doing a deep work in our hearts.

The writer many of the great things God has done and God has accomplished.  Because of this he knows that his request of the Lord to move mightily on behalf of Israel is not only possible but something the Lord can easily accomplish.  Where he is struggling is why the Lord is not moving right away.  Why does it seem that God is distant and absent?  He is not distant and absent, He is merely preparing the way for His will.  That work begins in our hearts.

The writer continually reminds the Lord of His covenant with Israel.  He asks that the Lord would not forget the poor and the down trodden.  There are times when it seems that the wicked prosper and that the Lord is absent.  But God’s will and His timing are sovereign.  Many times they are outside our understanding and therefore we must simply trust the Lord by faith.  He will move and He has simply called us to seek Him.  His will will be accomplished.

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Psalm 130:5

I wait for the Lord, my soul waits,
And in His word I do hope.  Psalm 130:5

Waiting on the Lord can be difficult, uncomfortable, and hard.  There is a deep work that takes place in our hearts as we wait upon the Lord.  Our faith and trust continues to grow deeper as we wait upon the Lord for His timing and His promise.  God is always faithful and His timing is always perfect.  But this is very difficult because He often doesn’t tell us when something will happen.  What I have found as I have waited on the Lord and continue to wait upon Him is that He simply continues to lead me to His word.

He leads me to examples in His word of people who have had to wait upon Him.  He leads me to promises in His word that He is faithful and will complete what He has begun in us by His grace and His power.  But this journey is all about growing in Him and becoming more and more like Him.  This only happens as patience is developed in our lives and patience is also known as long suffering. Often times for patience to be developed in a life of a person they must be willing to suffer for a long period of time.

Suffering is never enjoyable while we are going through it, but there is a purpose behind it.  Those our Father loves He prunes and that pruning process can be very painful and uncomfortable.  But we must be willing to yield and surrender our hearts to the Lord and His will.  One of the most difficult things in our Christian journey is surrendering our hearts and lives to the will of God.  God is faithful and fulfill every promise and plan.  But waiting upon Him for His timing and His way can be hard but is always designed with a purpose.

And all His work is done in faithfulness

For the word of the Lord is upright, And all His work is done in faithfulness. He loves righteousness and justice; The earth is full of the loving kindness of the Lord.

Psalm 33:4-5 NASB

The Lord is faithful.  He is faithful to fulfill every plan and purpose according to His sovereign will.  There are times during our journey with the Lord that we can feel as if we have been forgotten or abandoned.  But it is in the most difficult moments that God is doing His greatest work.

God’s greatest desire is to produce within us His nature and His character.  When we are born into this world we are born into sin and bondage.  We are enslaved to sin and we are driven to fulfill the selfish and wicked desires that exist within us.  But when we come to Jesus our hearts and lives are set free from the curse of sin and death.

As we walk with Christ each day and seek His face through prayer and the study of His word, our lives are transformed from the inside out.  The deepest works of God in the life of a person when the work is taking place is not noticed by those on the outside, but for the person being transformed the process at times is painful and challenging.

For Jesus compared the Christian journey to carrying one’s cross.  This journey can not be accomplished in our own strength.  It is in the place of process that we learn to die to ourselves and learn to rely fully upon the Lord.  The maturation process in Christ is one in which we simply learn to live each day fully relying upon God.

In every moment, no matter how big or small we learn to fully trust the Lord.  The greatest thing we can do is simply abide in Him each day.  As we draw near and seek Him our hunger for Him will continue to grow and overtake our heart.  We will become obsessed with Him and the pursuit of His kingdom.  May we focus our hearts each day upon the Lord and meditate daily upon His word.

For You have been my stronghold And a refuge in the day of my distress

But as for me, I shall sing of Your strength; Yes, I shall joyfully sing of Your loving kindness in the morning, For You have been my stronghold And a refuge in the day of my distress.

Psalm 59:16 NASB

The Lord is our stronghold.  He is the one who sustains us throughout this journey we call life.  For everything God has called us to do, He has equipped us for His purposes.  Our journey with Him is a journey of progressive growth.  Through every trial and challenge we learn to rely upon the Lord each and every day.  We learn to decrease so that He may increase in us.

God has given us His word to guide our lives, to correct us, and to encourage us on a daily basis.  Time spent daily in God’s word will renew our minds and transform our lives.  It will give us the proper perspective in every situation.  If we walk this journey without spending time in God’s word we will see all things from an earthly perspective.  We will see things as impossible and will believe things to be limited.  But when we diligently study the scripture daily we will have a heavenly perspective.  We will believe and understand with the Lord nothing is impossible.  We will see with God there are no limits and that whatever He has called and commissioned us to do is indeed possible because it is simply accomplished through Him and by His hand.

Abounding in love to all who call to you

You, Lord, are forgiving and good, abounding in love to all who call to you.

Psalm 86:5 NIV

The tells us time and time again to call upon Him.  One of the most powerful things we have on this earth in our relationship with Jesus Christ is prayer.  Through Jesus we are able to draw near to the throne of grace with confidence.  Our sin is gone and when we open our mouths and pour out our hearts, our Father in Heaven hears us.

He is abounding in love towards us.  There are many out there who believe that God is angry at them or some how holds there past over them.  But the truth is when we come to Christ and give our lives to Him, our past has been nailed to the cross.  Our sins no longer remains.

May our lives be a house of prayer.  May we seek the Lord with our whole heart.  May we remove every idol and every hindrance from our lives.  When prayer becomes the priority and focus, we become the sons and daughters God has called us to be.

Psalm 119:105: lamp for my feet

Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path.

Psalm 119:105 NIV

God’s word lights our path.  We live in a world filled with darkness and the steps we make on a daily basis are based upon decisions that are made.  Decisions made take place in our heart and in our mind.  When we study God’s word daily and partake of His word it is the Holy Spirit who transforms our lives from the inside out.  It is the Holy Spirit who leads and guides us throughout the course of each day.

A decision to follow Jesus is one in which we decide to walk with Christ every day of our lives.  It is not a one time decision that simply takes place.  It is a daily decision to align ourselves with God’s word and the pursuit of His kingdom.  It is impossible to claim to follow Christ and pursuit our own selfish wants and desires.  For when we choose to follow Christ we turn our lives over to Him and they now belong to Jesus.

Today if you find yourself struggling with a decision that needs to be made seek the Lord in prayer and the study of His word.  The more time we spend with the Lord, the more sensitive we become to His voice and His leading.  The more we come to recognize how He is leading us on a daily basis.  The bottom line is the more time we spend with Him, the more we become like Him.

Truly my soul waiteth upon God

Truly my soul waiteth upon God: from him cometh my salvation.

Psalm 62:1 KJV

Our salvation is found in the Lord alone.  There are times in our walk with the Lord when we are told to wait upon Him.  His time table and ours is very different.  He views things in an eternal perspective and all things happen according to His sovereign will.  There are times when God will close doors and not tell us why He has closed a door.  He simply tells us to trust Him.

There is a deep work that takes place in the waiting.  There is a maturing process that happens in the human heart as we wait upon the Lord for His timing and His will.  When we wait upon Him we surrender to His will and we lay down our wants and desires at the foot of the cross.

We live in a day and age when people want things right now.  This is not how it works with God’s kingdom and this is why I think many Christians struggle.  There are false teachings out there that speak of simply speaking things into existence.  The problem is that this is not biblical and will not happen if it doesn’t align with the Father’s will.  What it ends up doing is simply shipwrecking the faith of many because they are feed a lie and place their faith in this false teaching.

We are called to do all things according to the will of the Lord.  We are called to seek first God’s kingdom and His righteousness.  This means that we will need to lay things down and pick up our cross.  May we never view God as simply someone who gives us what we want.  To do this is to cheapen who God is and fail to understand what Jesus has truly done at the cross.  Jesus came to save us from ourselves.  Left to ourselves we will destroy ourselves and there are times that it is because of God’s love for us that He simply says no and closes a door.

O God, thou art my God

O God, thou art my God; early will I seek thee: my soul thirsteth for thee, my flesh longeth for thee in a dry and thirsty land, where no water is;

Psalm 63:1 KJV

God is to be our obsession and our desire.  As we draw near we grow in our desire for His presence and His fellowship.  The nearer we grow to God the more we desire Him.  The psalmist speaks of thirsting and longing for thee.  It speaks of a deep desires that begins within the depths of our hearts.  It guards us from merely going through religious exercise.

Jesus has come so that the relationship lost between humanity and God in Eden can be restored.  In coming to faith in Jesus Christ we are able to draw near with our whole heart, mind, soul, and strength.  Sin that once separated us from God, no longer remains.  When I go before the Lord seeking forgiveness our sins are forgiven.  They have been nailed to the cross.  The enemy will try to remind us of our past, but we simply need to remind him of his future.  He will burn in the Lake of Fire for all eternity.  Jesus is returning and will one day establish His kingdom upon the earth.  May we draw near and fall in love with Jesus more and more each day.

Psalm 121:1-2: I will lift up my eyes to the hills

I will lift up my eyes to the hills— From whence comes my help? My help comes from the Lord, Who made heaven and earth.

Psalm 121:1-2 NKJV

Our help comes from the Lord.  David understood this through everything he faced in his life.  David spent much of his life running from Saul before he ever became king.  It was through the challenges and struggles David faced that David became the man God called him to be and also deepened David’s faith and trust in the Lord.

Often times when we are going through trials, the trials themselves can seem overwhelming.  But this is why our eyes and our hearts must be fixed upon the Lord.  When our eyes are fixed upon the Lord we will walk in His perfect peace.  We will place everything in the right perspective.  We will see our challenges for what they are, simply stepping stones of growth.  Every trial is simply an opportunity to grow deeper in our relationship with Jesus Christ.  May the joy of the Lord be our strength.

Psalm 84:10-12: For a day in Your courts is better than a thousand

10 For a day in Your courts is better than a thousand.
I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God
Than dwell in the tents of wickedness.
11 For the Lord God is a sun and shield;
The Lord will give grace and glory;
No good thing will He withhold
From those who walk uprightly.

12 Lord of hosts,
Blessed is the man who trusts in You!  Psalm 84:10-12

The psalmist understood the beauty and magnificence of the Lord’s presence.  To be a doorkeeper was to be on the outside and was a position of low significance.  To dwell within something was to enjoy all that it provided.  The psalmist desired nothing of that which was wicked and desired everything of that which was of God and His kingdom.

The only result of chasing after wickedness and this world is destruction.  Yes it is enjoyable for a season, but in the end it simply leads to destruction.  But to walk with the Lord is to be tested on a daily basis.  It is to be refined in all things.  It is not about comfort or simply desiring to enjoy, it is instead about drawing near each day to come to know the Lord deeper.

The Lord is our sun and shield.  He not only leads and guides us and lights the way, He also protects us and provides for every need.  He will never withhold any good thing for those who simply desire to use their lives to glorify and honor His name.  It doesn’t mean He gives us whatever we want, it means that He gives us what we need for His purposes.

His grace and His glory covers us and the Holy Spirit lives within us.  God continues to draw us nearer each day asking us to let go of those things that would hinder our relationship with Him and simply abandoning our hearts and lives to who He is.  To follow Christ is to pursue Him with all that is within us.

There is great blessing in trusting and following the Lord.  It doesn’t mean we will be rich or have the biggest house on the block.  It means that we will know Him personally and will spend all eternity in His kingdom.  Every person born on this earth will live for ever.  Some will spend all eternity in God’s kingdom, ruling and reigning with Jesus Christ.  Some will spend all eternity in eternal punishment because they choose to reject Jesus Christ and the wonderful gift of salvation offered to them.

May we understand all we have in Christ.  May we come to know and understand God’s promises and plans for our lives.  So many struggle because they simply don’t know who they are in Christ and don’t know the Lord in an intimate way.  The only way to know Him is to draw near and to turn from anything and everything that would hinder our walk with Him.