Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Cast Off

 9But thou hast cast off, and put us to shame; and goest not forth with our armies.
 10Thou makest us to turn back from the enemy: and they which hate us spoil for themselves.
 11Thou hast given us like sheep appointed for meat; and hast scattered us among the heathen.
 12Thou sellest thy people for nought, and dost not increase thy wealth by their price.
 13Thou makest us a reproach to our neighbours, a scorn and a derision to them that are round about us.
 14Thou makest us a byword among the heathen, a shaking of the head among the people.
 15My confusion is continually before me, and the shame of my face hath covered me,
 16For the voice of him that reproacheth and blasphemeth; by reason of the enemy and avenger. 

Cast Off

Does God need us? Is God obligated to us? Is God to be held in account if things go badly for us? Of course, the answer is, "No!" to all three questions. Why, then, do we tend to act as though these questions are true? When things go badly, why are Christians some of the first to hold God to account, charging Him with not coming to their aid?

We have a very narrow view of life, which is somewhat myopic. Though we know it is not true, we live as though we are each the center of our own universe. But, what of God? Is life just a haphazard jumble of events? Is there no order or purpose in the unfolding events of time upon this earth?

In a sense, the psalmist is asking God these same questions in the verses shown above from Psalm 44. He recognizes that they have been seemingly cast off by God. Wisely, the psalmist understands that all of their hope and strength rests in God, but he is admittedly confused by their current state of life. Where is God in all of this?

As Christians, we are often guilty of immersing ourselves in the affairs of this world, and only giving lip service to the God we serve. In response, God often upsets our world, giving us the opportunity to consider the realities of life, determining what is truly important and what is not. It is not God's purpose to grant us a life of wealth and ease, but rather to keep our hearts tuned to Him. Joy, peace, and happiness are not the results of this world, but are only truly found in God, our Father.

As we grow in the Lord, we begin to understand that, regardless of the current affairs of our life, God is our hope, our strength, and our life. That is a good thing; indeed, God is truly being gracious to us as we come to realize where our true strength lies.

Though the psalmist seems to be doubting God, we will see that, though he expresses doubts, yet his faith and hope really do rest in God. 

As Christians, there are many times it may seem as though we have been cast off by God. At times such as this, we must remember that it is not necessary to know all of the answers to the perplexities of life. God calls us to faith in Him--a faith that will not leave us ashamed, but will strengthen us in our relationship with Him. 

God is our light and salvation; in Him is no darkness, neither shadow of turning. He is the only worthy object of our faith! In truth, we, His children, are never cast off, but will transcend the boundaries of this world to live with Him forever!

What an amazing God we serve!

God Bless You,
Linda

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