Comes with mercy

David prays and looks to God for help, especially when he is surrounded with enemies.  In fact in Psalm 57, in the very first verse, he repeats the request twice because he is fully aware of how great the danger he is in, and not just twice but with intensity and those two things implied just how much hope and trust he had in God’s mercy.

His argument – God has helped me in my past distresses and that is why he has hope in his present situation.

David supports himself with faith and hope in God, and prayer to Him.

This is not to earn the mercy of God; mercy can’t be earned. He said it to tell God that He was David’s only hope. His soul trusted in God and nothing else; there was nothing else to trust in.

“How can the Lord be unmerciful to a trustful soul? Our faith does not deserve mercy, but it always wins it from the sovereign grace of God when it is sincere.” – Spurgeon

So what will I do – I too will put my life in God’s hand – my immortal spirit knows no other portion than God. Even when I need a speedy answer – immediate relief – I can expect the mercy and grace of God.  My great act of faith is to only trust God in such circumstances – not just a profession of trust – but one that is sincere – all my heart and all my soul – and that makes a reason or argument for mercy seeing that His mercy encourages my faith and hope.  I believe the Lord takes pleasure in those that hope and trust in Him. 

Be merciful to me, O God, be merciful to me, for in you my soul takes refuge; in the shadow of your wings I will take refuge, until the destroying storms pass by.  I cry to God Most High, to God who fulfills his purpose for me.– Psalm 57:1-2

Magnificent God – Big Daddy Weave

Advertisements

Put your hope in God

Hope and confidence regardless of the present circumstances because of our respect for the future – God is my health and my salvation. 

 Biblical hope doesn’t deny the pain of the present. Nor is it wishful thinking. Rather, true hope is “in God,” in the one god who is fully and finally reliable.

In our blue moments, we wait for God who is working out our purposes.

God is the only one who is perfectly capable and faithful to do the right thing every time. 

Psalm 43 identifies a lists of hope in its first four verses –

  1. God’s power to deliver – He is faithful and will continue to walk with us
  2. God’s presence and protection – His being our fortress of truth
  3. God’s direction – the Word gives us the answers that we need 
  4. God as our joy – Joy in Him and His Word and we will experience hope even in hopeless situations

My hope is in God. Even though I don‘t feel like it. Even though I don‘t feel as if
He were here. He is. My hope is there

Maybe it is time to speak to our soul when we find ourselves down.  Speaking God’s Word in particular fill us with hope and encouragement.

 Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God. – Psalm 43:5

Find Rest (Audio) – Francesca Battistelli

Dwelling in hope

David, though a person of the Old Testament, was one who had a quiet, firm and full hope of the resurrection of the dead and of eternal life and glory.

Hope and confidence in God delivers a joy to the soul, a gladness that is found in speech and a quietness that comes from a body absorbed in peace.  To be destitute of the help of God can only result in sorrow and torment.  Trusting in God delivers us, and fills our hearts with joy – one that is promised, one that we can be full of, and one that cannot be taken away from us. It means that we fall under the protection of God – it is because of this that we are still anxious and tremble – for we still have sorrows, but in the midst of them we can rejoice for there are no troubles so great that can break the peace that God gives to us.  The promise of the resurrection goes one step further – the hope that is promised to the soul is also made to the body – so God protects them both.

That is what makes a Christian’s definition of hope – it is not a wish – it is a solid, concrete promise that is based on God’s Word.  

So Peter, noticed something in David’s writings too.  As David was expressing his own hope in God, it would seem that he expressed things that only the Holy Spirit could have expressed.  David saw things far into the future regarding the promised Messiah knowing somehow that he would still have the opportunity of experiencing something more in the future.

For David says concerning him, ‘I saw the Lord always before me, for he is at my right hand that I may not be shaken;  therefore my heart was glad, and my tongue rejoiced; moreover my flesh will dwell in hope.  For thou wilt not abandon my soul to Hades, nor let thy Holy One see corruption.  Thou hast made known to me the ways of life; thou wilt make me full of gladness with thy presence.’ – Acts 2:25-28

Great is Your Faithfulness – Martin Smith

An anchor for the soul

“And now, O Lord, what do I wait for?
    My hope is in you. – Psalm 39:7

Maybe the better word for dreaming is optimism when it comes to confusing it with biblical hope.  Optimism comes in the form of positive thinking  – having a cheery disposition as you look on the bright side of things – whereas biblical hope is based on certainty and truth. Basing life on fantasy however ends up being of little value.  As people who represent the God of hope, we represent Him as people of hope – being certain of God’s promises.

Not only promises, what about His oath?  So we have a promise and an oath that secure our hope.

That hope now becomes our anchor.  The hope is an anchor because it is placed on God’s promise to Abraham and the oath that this promise would come to pass.  This is all set on Christ who is our anchor and when life wants to toss us or dislodge us from our place in Him, it cannot, we hold firm with certainty and in peace.  Think of a boat in open water or in a storm.  Nothing will keep it in place other than an anchor. The anchor is the only thing keeping it from drifting.  Hope is the anchor of our souls.

People swear by someone greater than themselves, and the oath confirms what is said and puts an end to all argument.  Because God wanted to make the unchanging nature of his purpose very clear to the heirs of what was promised, he confirmed it with an oath.  God did this so that, by two unchangeable things in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have fled to take hold of the hope set before us may be greatly encouraged.  We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure. It enters the inner sanctuary behind the curtain,  where our forerunner, Jesus, has entered on our behalf. He has become a high priest forever, in the order of Melchizedek. – Hebrews 6:16-20

Anchor [Lyrics] – Hillsong

Hope: The Anchor of the Soul

HOPE: AN ANCHOR FOR THE SOUL

 

His steadfast love

Truly the eye of the Lord is on those who fear him,
    on those who hope in his steadfast love Psalm 33:18

It was Psalm 32 that God gave me when I was 14 years old, but it was Psalm 33 that expresses exactly what happened the night I read Psalm 32.

I started to go to Sunday School at a Presbyterian church, invited and taken by my friend and neighbour Mark Findley and his family – I was ten years old.  Two years later we moved and started to attend the closest church to our home, a Missionary church.  At twelve I knew something was missing and was just not sure what it was.  I knew though that I wanted God to be a very special part of my life.  At that time God was just beginning to be a resurrected interest in the life of my parents.

I started praying every night that God would take my life and use it and of course I wanted to know how He was going to use it so that I might prepare myself.  For two years He did not respond.

At fourteen, I remember that I had enough – praying every night and no response?  I fell across by bed and said to myself that there must not be a God and a split second later I remember telling myself, who was I kidding – He was real.  So I prayed what I thought would be my last prayer and asked God to show me what He wanted to tell me.

I picked up my Bible, opened it with my eyes closed, took my finger and landed on Psalm 32:8.  Could not have been more personal, could not have been more real, could not have been more perfectly timed – God had spoken.

Hope filled my soul – peace filled my heart – joy was deep and resident — this verse sustained me in years of hell. They were my anchor through the storms and in fact, may I dare say, they turned those years into moments of blessing because I always knew His eye was on me, guiding me, and loving me.

Could not have asked for more.  Today, those memories of hell are not remembered with ill-will.  They are remembered for so many teaching moments, so many moments when God’s love consumed by body and took me out of my hell for moments of incredible experiences with Him. I am today who I am because He instructed me, He taught me and He counselled me – and I put my hope completely in Him and Him alone.

I will instruct you and teach you the way you should go; I will counsel you with my eye upon you. – Psalm 32:8

His Love Endures Forever – Michael Smith + Lyrics.wmv

Psalm 147:11

THE STABILITY OF HIS STEADFAST LOVE

In His Steadfast Love, God Will Meet Me

The Pleasure of God in Those Who Hope in His Love

Hope in God’s Steadfast Love

HOPE IN HIS STEADFAST LOVE

Steadfast Love

 

Gives you a future

If I emphasize God’s mercy, I can emphasize my own sinfulness and in the same spirit, hoped for cleansing.  It is not healthy to dwell on your own sinfulness, God takes it in His hand and for those of us who have sinned and have been forgiven know how much we appreciate His mercy.

Our times of crisis ultimately become our times of opportunity.  As we commit ourselves to God, we find our faith in ourselves, in others and in God deepening.

Now to Him who is able to [carry out His purpose and] do superabundantly more than all that we dare ask or think [infinitely beyond our greatest prayers, hopes, or dreams], according to His power that is at work within us – Ephesians 3:20

For surely I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord, plans for your welfare and not for harm, to give you a future with hope. – Jeremiah 29:11

Be strong, be courageous,
    all you that hope in the Lord. – Psalm 31:24

 For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all,[a] training us to renounce impiety and worldly passions, and in the present age to live lives that are self-controlled, upright, and godly, while we wait for the blessed hope and the manifestation of the glory of our great God and Savior,[b] Jesus Christ.  He it is who gave himself for us that he might redeem us from all iniquity and purify for himself a people of his own who are zealous for good deeds. – Titus 2:11-14

Why would we reject God’s mercy, our only hope of salvation?

Truly the eye of the Lord is on those who fear him,
    on those who hope in his steadfast love – Psalm 33:18

Our hope is in the resurrected Jesus Christ.

But you do see! Indeed you note trouble and grief, that you may take it into your hands; the helpless commit themselves to you; you have been the helper of the orphan. – Psalm 10:14

Be still, my soul: thy God doth undertake
To guide the future, as He has the past.
Thy hope, thy confidence let nothing shake;
All now mysterious shall be bright at last.

BE STILL MY SOUL by Katharina A. von Schlegel
Music: Jean Sibelius
(Be Still My Soul by Selah)
(Violin version of Be Still My Soul)