Saturday, July 16, 2011

The Rest of the Story

 37Mark the perfect man, and behold the upright: for the end of that man is peace.
 38But the transgressors shall be destroyed together: the end of the wicked shall be cut off.
 39But the salvation of the righteous is of the LORD: he is their strength in the time of trouble.
 40And the LORD shall help them, and deliver them: he shall deliver them from the wicked, and save them, because they trust in him. 

 The Rest of the Story

For years, Paul Harvey, a conservative newscaster, regaled us with his stories, but we all remember most of all the format he used. After a dialogue of a few minutes, he left us with a cliff hanger followed by an ad. Then he returned with, "The rest of the story," where the surprise ending was revealed.

David does much the same thing here at the end of Psalm 37. After several verses of discussion regarding the righteous and the wicked, he now gives the conclusion of the matter.

Mark the perfect man, and behold the upright: for the end of that man is peace. But the transgressors shall be destroyed together: the end of the wicked shall be cut off.

Why is the end of the righteous peace? The end of the righteous is peace because they understand that God is their strength in the time of trouble. When they reach the point where nothing they can do will resolve their difficulties, they understand that it was never about their own strength or their own abilities. It was always God who saw them through their past troubles, and it is God who will see them through the troubles of this day as well.

As Christians, is it our own wisdom that gives us victory over the vices of our enemies? Is it our own power or strength that gives us the fortitude to face the overpowering forces of wickedness that seem to swallow up any semblance of righteousness remaining in this world? No! It is the help of the Lord which gives us the strength and power to persevere. Why does God help us? He helps us because we trust in Him.

Could it be so simple? Why, then, does it seem to take us our entire lives before we reach that point of perfect peace? We are a proud people; it is hard for us to come to the point of realization that we just cannot live this life uprightly in our own strength and power. Satan's devices and the pull of this world are just too great for us.

Jesus Christ understands our weakness; He was tempted just as we are tempted. Yet, Jesus knew God personally; He drew His strength from God His Father. Let us look to Christ who opened the way to God, and draw from the resources of everlasting strength and power given to us by God, our Father.

No matter what your circumstances--no matter what you are going through at this time--may God grant to you His peace.

And that, dear friend, is the rest of the story!

God Bless You,
Linda

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