Tag Archives: Psalms

Psalm 46:4-6

Psalm 46

Good early morning. As I am writing this is, it is in the wee hours of the morning. For some reason, I was suddenly awakened and knew I had to get up and spend some time with Jesus. Although, I know I will be tired later this afternoon, there is nothing quite like a still and quiet house where you can sense the calming, comforting presence of God.

I pulled out my Scripture memory spiral and began to review my verses.

Psalm 46 spiral

I am trying to memorize all of Psalm 46 before our upcoming retreat the first weekend of October, where I get the privilege of teaching God’s Word on Friday night. Psalm 46:10 is our theme verse – “Be still and know that I am God . . .” As I was reviewing verses 4-6, they literally jumped off the page and landed deep in my heart.

“There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God, the holy place where the Most High dwells. God is within her, she will not fall. God will help her at break of day.” Psalm 46:4-6

The verses seemed like they were speaking very directly and specifically to me. I wondered what would happen if I changed just one little word in the verses to apply them personally to my life.

“There is a river whose streams make glad the woman of God, the holy place where the Most High dwells. God is within her, she will not fall. God will help her at break of day.” Psalm 46:4-6

It may seem like a “no, no” to take out the word “city” and change it to “woman”, but I believe I can Biblically support this application. You see, before Jesus came, God dwelt among His people in Jerusalem, Israel (“the city of God”). His very presence was placed in a large box and that box remained in the temple, behind a massive curtain. Only a select few were granted access behind the curtain.

However, after Jesus came to earth and died on the cross, that massive curtain tore from the top to the bottom (Matthew 27:50-51), symbolizing that God’s presence would no longer be contained in a box, but would take up residence within each person who believes upon the saving name of Jesus Christ.

“The holy place where God dwells” is no longer confined to one city, but to many people.

Therefore, “there is a river whose streams make glad the woman of God, the holy place where the Most High dwells”. Because of Jesus, I am His dwelling place! I don’t think I will ever get over the fact that “The Most High” chooses to dwell in a lowly creature such as myself. Pretty amazing, isn’t it?

The “river that makes us glad” is the Holy Spirit: 38 Whoever believes in me, as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them.” 39 By this he meant the Spirit, whom those who believed in him were later to receive. . . John 7:38-39a

Because God’s Spirit dwells in us, “God is within her, she will not fall; God will help her at break of day.”

What a wonderful promise!

  • I will not fall, because I have God living in me.
  • He is mighty within me.
  • He will sustain me.
  • He will help me at break of day.

I think God woke me up before “daybreak” so that I could be reminded that even in darkness, whether that be literal or figurative, God is my help.

This is the view from my window right now . . . darkness. But the light is about to shine!

darkness

He is truly all I need. These quiet times, in a still house, allow me to realign myself with Him. It gives me the time my spirit craves to stop my striving and rest in Him.

What about you?

  • Do you need to be reminded that God’s very presence dwells in you?
  • Do you need His Spirit to flow like a river to make your soul glad?
  • Need to be reminded that whatever you’re going through, God is within you and You. Will. Not. Fall.
  • Have you been in a season of darkness?
  • God’s light is getting ready to break through to help you.
  • Don’t lose heart and don’t give up hope!

river

Believe it!

Your Friend in Ministry,

Name3

Comforters Need Comfort Too

This past Sunday at church, I was extremely emotional.  In my spirit, I was grieving about different situations that members of our church are experiencing – loss, illness, heartache.  As we were singing, “I will call upon your name and keep my eyes above the waves, when oceans rise, my soul will rest in your embrace, for I am yours and you are mine . . .”  the weight of what individuals in our dear flock are going through overwhelmed me to the point of tears.  I then had two choices to make – stuff my tears so no one would see them, or let them flow – potentially causing people to wonder what was wrong with me.

I have learned it is best for me to let the tears flow when they need to, rather than stuff them to be dealt with at another time.  So, I let them flow and as they did, a strange and wonderful thing happened.  The comforter became the comforted.  First a hug by a friend who asked what was wrong.  When I mentioned that I was grieving the things people were going through, she encouraged me that I have the heart of Jesus for those hurting in our church.  After worship was over and we went into our greeting time, I went to the bathroom for a bit of privacy and encountered more women who wanted to physically embrace me and offer me words of comfort.  It felt so good to cry on their shoulders.  One of them said, “Comforters need comfort too.”  Another older lady asked how she could pray for me.  Two others embraced me in a circle and reminded me that God gave us to each other to walk through difficult times together.

I didn’t expect to have an emotional break down at church that day, but I’m so glad I did.  The Lord used the power of His Spirit, a beautiful worship song and my sisters in Christ to comfort me.  Had I not been willing to be real and human, I would have missed out on the comfort I so greatly needed.

Comforters need comfort too.  When the weight of others sadness becomes too much for you to bear, where do you go for comfort?  I encourage you to make a comfort plan.  Here is what is included in mine:

  • Cry when I need to.  There is nothing like a good cry to release some of the emotions that get built up.
  • I Read the book of Psalms.  David is a master comforter; in fact, he’s penned some of the most comforting words in all of history – Psalm 23.
  • I remember that although God has called me to be a shepherd, the little flock under my care is ultimately His.  Two of my go to Scriptures when I need to lay people at the feet of Jesus are:  Save Your people and bless Your heritage; nourish and shepherd them and carry them forever. Psalm 28:9, Amplified and “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.”  John 10:11, NIV
  • I let others comfort me.  There is no shame in needing comfort as a comforter.  In fact, if you want to continue to be an effective comforter, it is imperative that you let others comfort you.  This is a key to longevity in ministry.

Comforters need comfort too.  As you continue to give God’s comfort, make sure you receive it as well.  One of God’s gifts of grace to us as leaders is providing people who feel called to love, support and encourage us.  Let them do what God has called them to do!

Your Friend in Ministry,

Name3

 

 

 

Lift Your Eyes

Often as leaders, people come to us for help – spiritual guidance, relational advice, prayer requests, etc…  We become so accustomed to giving help that we forget what it’s like to ask for help.  Asking for help is hard for most people.  It’s hard to admit you can’t do it all.  You are not sure if the person you are asking is reliable.  You don’t want to inconvenience anyone.  Maybe you don’t even know what kind of help to ask for.

Psalm 121

Psalm 121 tells why you can lift your eyes to God for help, because #1) He is your all-powerful Creator.

My help comes from the Lord, Who made heaven and earth.

God is so powerful that He made all the earth out of nothing.  You can ask God for help because He is powerful enough to help you no matter what kind of mess you find yourself in.  If He can create the entire world out of nothing, He certainly can come up with creative solutions to help you.  There is no degree of help you need that is beyond His creative ability.

Also you can lift your eyes to God for help because #2) He is your keeper.

The word keep or keeper is mentioned several times in Psalm 121.  It is the Hebrew word “shamar” which means to keep, guard, observe, give heed.  Psalm 121:3-8 shows that you can lift your eyes to God for help because He is your keeper.

He will not allow your foot to slip or to be moved; He Who keeps you will not slumber.

Behold, He who keeps Israel will neither slumber nor sleep.

He keeps watch.  God sees what you are going through.  He never sleeps.  He is always on the job.  God is ever at the ready to answer your cry for help because not only does He see, He cares about what you are going through.

The Lord is your keeper; the Lord is your shade on your right hand [the side not carrying a shield].

The sun shall not smite (harm) you by day, nor the moon by night.

The Lord will keep you from all evil; He will keep your life.

He guards and protects.  God’s got you covered.  Just like sunscreen guards and protects you against the sun’s harmful rays that can burn your skin and hurt you, God has got you covered.  When you give your life to Jesus, His promise is that there is not one area of your life that is outside of his protection.  Verse 7 says, he will keep you (guard or protect you) from all evil.  A life that is committed to the Lord is protected from evil and, more importantly, the evil one.

The Lord will keep your going out and your coming in from this time forth and forevermore.

God keeps you close to Him forever, which is the safest place to be.

Lifting your eyes to God for help first, before going to others, is a good discipline.  Often He uses others to help us, but make no mistake, even if help comes through human hands, it was sent by God.  God is the best One to go to first because…

  • God can always help you.  People may say, “Let me know if you need anything.”  God says, “I already know, even better than you do, what you need and I am willing and able to give you what you need.”
  • God has unlimited resources.  People say, “I will help you” which really means, if it’s not too much of an imposition, I will help you.  But we all know there is a limit to the amount of help any one person can give.  God says, “I have an unending supply of all that you need to get through this, you are never too needy for me.”
  • You will never inconvenience God.  People say, “Call me anytime” – which really means, only call during the hours of 9am-9pm.  God says, “I never slumber or sleep.  I am literally available at any time.  I watch over you, I know what you need and I already inconvenienced my Son so that you could have My presence and peace at all times.”
  • God has never said He expects you to be strong enough to handle life on your own.  As a matter of fact, He doesn’t want you to.  Thinking you can handle your business without any help from God or anyone else, is pride.  Pride keeps you from receiving what God so freely wants to give you – His help.

“Help me Jesus” is a prayer that leaders become good at praying.  We are faced with many things that are beyond our wisdom, experience or ability.  Thankfully, according to this Psalm, you don’t even have to verbally ask for God’s help, all you have to do is lift your eyes.                     Psalm 121:1 – I lift my eyes up to the heavens, where does my help come from . . .

Your Friend in Ministry,

Name3