“Blessed is the man who fears the LORD, who greatly delights in his commandments! … Light dawns in the darkness for the upright; he is gracious, merciful, and righteous. It is well with the man … who conducts his affairs with justice. For the righteous will never be moved; he will be remembered forever. He is not afraid of bad news; his heart is firm, trusting in the LORD. His heart is steady; he will not be afraid, until he looks in triumph on his adversaries.” (Psalm 112:1-8 ESV—emphasis mine), and:
“Great are the works of the LORD, studied by all who delight in them. Full of splendor and majesty is his work, and his righteousness endures forever. He has caused his wondrous works to be remembered; the LORD is gracious and merciful. “(Psalm 111:2-4 ESV)
Observation: There are 2 great themes I see in Ps 110-114: The Works of the Lord and our response to them. Not just these 5 Psalms but all of Psalms has at least these two themes wrapped in them somehow. So we can think: Ok, that’s good….but what does that mean to me?
I am committed to a practical, reflexive, integrated Christian walk. With that what I read in the Scriptures becomes something to deeply consider, thinking about not only how “they” did it but how am I to emulate it as well? As I have written before it is easy to skim right over these Words and not let them burrow down in my soul. Take for instance the Ps 111 passage above: Great are the works of the Lord but when I study, if I study am I recognizing “full of splendor and majesty” in what I study? Do I even remember His Wondrous Works? My point in thinking about this is the Ps 112 passage especially this “…He is not afraid of bad news; his heart is firm, trusting in the LORD. His heart is steady; he will not be afraid…” Being brutally frank with the guy in the mirror I struggle with fear many times—about my finances, my job, my obligations, etc….struggling because of this root cause more than anything else: I FORGET what He has mercifully done for me. Let me put aside the Salvation He has accomplished—let me just focus on His bountiful Goodness over the course of my life. There is not one place that I can conjure up from my memory where He did not do marvelous things. I can succumb to fear of the future because I forget to look backwards through my history and remember and acknowledge with thanksgiving what His Hand has accomplished, then turning around and looking with faith to His Bountiful Goodness for the future. I have heard it said that the failure of Israel was “they soon forgot…” One of the practical foundations of Faith can be as simple as “Remembering great are the Works of the Lord—Studied by all who delight in them.”
Lord God—Israel soon forgot and wandered often; I am just as forgetful–not can be forgetful but am forgetful. The challenges of the day, of my life’s circumstances, of being a part of this Earth and community—I do not just “lose sight”, I forget!! If only I can put my culture’s focus on “keep my eye on the prize”—always putting the focus on forward, but to put your clear direction of “not forgetting your Wondrous Works”, of talking about them, bearing witness, teaching Your Works to my children, grandchildren and great grandchildren. How do I testify of You? “Look at what He has done and be amazed!!”