Wednesday, April 8, 2015
Whether we call it the blahs, the doldrums, being out of touch, or losing focus, we all have stages in our lives when we are “out of it.” By God’s grace, these lapses are mostly short-lived, but there are times when they last much longer and so do their effects. In these cases, not only do we lose out on a lot of good things, we also affect others in a negative way. If we take a closer look into David’s Psalm 51, we will see that it typifies this situation and condition. Many bible versions give a title and occasion for many psalms. In this case, they cite the time when the prophet Nathan came to David to notify him that the Lord knew about his adulterous affair with Bathsheba and his involvement in her husband’s death. Just knowing that before you read the psalm will explain why David was “out of touch.”
Since David was aware that God already knew about his sins, he began his psalm acknowledging them and asking the Lord’s mercy and forgiveness. Then, he admitted and set forth the eternal requirement that God expects “truth in the inner parts.” (vs. 6) Today, that is referred to as “owning up” and taking full responsibility for our actions. In verse 7, realizing his sins had made him unclean, he asks the Lord to cleanse him and make him whiter than snow. In the next verse he wanted hear joy and gladness once more. In verse nine he asks that his iniquity be erased. In verse ten he asks for a new heart and spirit, that is, a different attitude and way of thinking. In verse 11, he pleads, “Do not cast me from your presence or take your Holy Spirit from me.” By God’s grace and divine plan, those who are His will never lose the Holy Spirit, but they can lose their fellowship with God and the joy that it brings. That is the reason David asked the Lord to return that lost joy to him in verse 12 and acknowledged in verse 13 that he would not be able to draw others to Him without it.
Time and space don’t allow me to go into more detail regarding this Psalm but I trust I have shared enough that it will be of benefit to you, especially if you are going through the spiritual “blahs.” Please keep in mind that David’s requests were granted. He was forgiven, restored, and the joy of the Lord returned to his heart. In fact, that’s where our strength to serve God comes from. The last part of Nehemiah 8:10 says that “the joy of the Lord is our strength.” If this is what you need in your life today, don’t spend another minute without it. If the Lord answered David’s prayers, He will answer you too for He has no favorites. And if you have a chance today, I encourage you to read Psalm 51 slowly, carefully, and prayerfully.
Memory verse for the week: (John 15:13) “Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.”