Daily Devotions

Thank You, God, My Keeper

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"My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth." (Psalm 121:2)

 Psalm 121 is another of those passages that every person of faith should read and memorize. I cannot count the number of times I have sat at a person's bedside and read this psalm. What I appreciate about this psalm is the promise that God "will not slumber...nor sleep." When you are about to be totally helpless, asleep under anesthesia, there is no greater comfort than knowing God will not sleep while you are sleeping.

 

God has promised to be our "keeper." The Hebrew word "keeper" is the same verb used elsewhere in the psalms as "guard." When we are sleeping, or otherwise helpless, God will guard us, and protect us. As the New Interpreter's Bible commentary affirms, "God is always in a position to help." We simply need to place our trust in the God who wants to help.

 

Today, ponder the moments in your life when you were helpless. Your helplessness could have been surgery. It might have been a financial struggle beyond your control. Perhaps you have a child who suffers with an illness. Feelings of helplessness are not unique to you. They are part of the human condition. No matter how hard we attempt to avoid that reality, we are all destined to experience helplessness at different points in our lives.

 

Pray to God today for trust. The moments of helplessness become easier to bear, when we realize that our helplessness is not hopelessness. While we are helpless, God is all powerful, and that is our hope. Consider the ways you have been helpless in life, and thank God for keeping you safe and guarding your live. Even if you didn't ask, or even know God was there, God guarded your life. God will continue to guard your life, now and for all eternity. Praise be the name of the Lord.

Peace from the Inside Out

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"Too long have I had my dwelling among those who hate peace."

(Psalm 120:6)

 

I claim faith in God, but sadly, too often, I fail to exemplify that faith. Often, my prayers quickly slide into complaining and whining. I pray for peace, but what I expect God to give is not peace, but ease. The difference lies outside me. Peace is found from within, no matter the circumstances outside my soul. Ease, requires God to create a peaceful existence all around me. God often answers the prayer by nurturing peace, but God often does not respond, when the person desires ease.

The psalmist is writing shortly after the return of the exiles from Babylon. They are lost and ill prepared for the challenges of rebuilding their "Promised Land." The Psalmist is praying for "peace" but it feels like the psalmist really desires ease. In a tired moment, the gift of ease is desired, but over the long haul, peace is the more beneficial gift. Peace is a gift that is not dependent on outside forces to become a reality. Peace is something that you and God make a reality, without the dependency of others.

 

Today, pray for "peace." Don't demand God make your life easy, in order to be at peace. Trust God to bring true peace to your life. The peace comes from living a life worthy of your best self. Peace requires pleasing just one in your life, God. Finding peace, means having expectations that do not include a perfect external reality. Peace means having a strong internal reality. Peace is found in being so right with God, that nothing external can shake your relationship with the divine. Like any relationship, it takes commitment and work. Praying for peace is a process, so lets get to work.

 

 

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