I have loved the work of David in the Psalms since I read them at age 20, and memorized many of them. I have a lovely painting hanging on my office wall to remind people who come for counseling that we are led beside still waters by our Great Shepherd. Therefore, fear must not be a controlling factor in our life.
Since entering adulthood I have lived mostly on the edge and shedding a few bitter tears over such, I have come to understand that the Lord lets us fail in outrageous undertakings in order to teach a greater lesson than if we were successful on each venture. I do admit a few have been beyond the pale.
People with the Don Quixote complex tend to lose a few, but with impossible dreams, it only takes a few to really enjoy the marvelous power of Christ in life. General Douglas MacArthur said, “Years may wrinkle the skin, but to give up interest wrinkles the soul. You are as young as your faith, as old as your doubt; as young as your self-confidence, as old as your fear; as young as your hope as old as your despair. In the central place of every heart there is a recording chamber. So long as it receives messages of beauty, hope, cheer and courage, so long are you young. When your heart is covered with the snows of pessimism and the ice of cynicism, then, and then only, are you grown old. And then, indeed as the ballad says, you just fade away”
The General was the orator par excellence with the uncanny ability to instill courage and hope in the hearts of those who heard him. I know of no one on earth at this time with his skill in the use of stirring words.
The verse from David stirred old memories of MacArthur when I read this in Psalms 138:7, “Though I walk in the midst of trouble, thou wilt revive me: thou shalt stretch forth thine hand against the wrath of mine enemies, and thy right hand shall save me.”
If anyone knew by experience the power of the Lord to guide, comfort and deliver it was David. David experienced miraculous interventions of God on his behalf regularly. Each time David was delivered from a lion or bear, even a giant, David was also delivered a little more from David!
Many of the really nice people who read my articles are going through troublesome times. This trouble may be financial, marital, siblings, to say nothing of the terror movement that stalks the free world like a wild African Lion with a license to maim and kill, with little fear of retaliation. While admitting current times are interesting, we know that far more dangerous times are coming. What should we, the average Christian, be doing? Trusting more fibbing politicians? Of course not. Our hope is in the Lord Jesus.
Keep in mind that David’s tremendous faith and courage did not keep trouble away, but God showed Himself faithful to David as He has promised to all His children. Notice:
1 Peter 5:10, “But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle you.” The idea seems to be that the Lord is using the pain, the heart ache, the loss, to grow us in the grace of our Lord. Believe me I know that often growing pains really hurt, sometimes physically, more often spiritually and emotionally.
It’s apparent that King David and General MacArthur had several things in common. Both were thoughtful men, and both knew the importance of the inner man being full of faith and courage. Outward bravery is not that at all, but mere bravado.
You and I as Christians are called upon to face the rigors of life with courage and confidence with a full trust in the Lord for His outcome in whatever battles we face, even the ones we seem to lose. Loss, is not that at all if we believe and understand the truth of
Romans 8:28, “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.” As to the natural whys of life’s roller coaster ride, I have to answer, “We will understand it better bye and bye.”
Copyright © 2014 Larry Lilly.
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