Journal Ps 131-132 (all references are from the ESV; changes in punctuation are mine)

Scripture: “O Lord, my heart is not lifted up; my eyes are not raised too high.

 

I do not occupy myself with things too great and too marvelous for me.

 

But I have calmed and quieted my soul, like a weaned child with its mother; like a weaned child is my soul within me.” Ps 131:1-2

 

Observation:  How do I know the difference between selfish, worldly ambition and godly ambition?  When do I stop “being all that I can be” and being all what God wants me to be? When is “peace” enough?

 

Analysis:  Punch line: I don’t know when to stop chasing thoughts and things.  And I don’t know how to advise folks to recognize what “too far” is and stop.

 

There is a part of the “American dream” that anyone can be what they want as long as you work hard for it; dream big!!  I talk myself into being aggressive.

 

There is the other part of “not living up to your potential.”  Young adults get that from an encouraging POV (probably parents, but certainly from American culture), prodding them to have a high vision; older folks get that heard sometimes as a description of failure—“I could have been a contender!!!”

 

If I ask God, many times there is silence.  I don’t know, really know, what He wants me to hear.  I have always been told to “hear” His Word from the written Scriptures—but most times I fail to analyze and discern what is important.  Candidly, I have a hope, a desire, a want.  It is not for stuff, but I have had a particular hope for 50 years now—and I will suppose that hope will follow me to my grave.  At times, this “hope” has turned into “agitation”—agitation that I have not received my “hope.”  Maybe others can identify with me here.

 

This is where I am turned into “calming my soul; quieting my soul.”  Examining myself, if I am looking at things too “wonderful”, too high…things further than God has given me reach for, then maybe, just maybe I need to roll things back for a bit.

 

And find peace in Him…

 

Prayer: Father, the mystery of holy dichotomy…Pursuing You and finding Rest in You.  Please wipe the fog away in my perception and make it happen in my heart.  I want You and You alone.

 

AMEN

Rick Sutton