What do you have?
What has God blessed you to have in your posession on this world?
Everything you have (and don't have) is a gift from God. Yet, sometimes we forget that God was the one who gifted everything, including our very breath, to us. And when we do, we fall into letting ourselves follow things that are not God, and we fall into trusting them!
- Read Psalm 49
This Pslam is nice and simple in the New International Version
- Devotional Thought
Psalm 49 is for everyone. In the introduction alone, we see all sorts of people addressed. And that's an important thing to notice, because it reinforces that no matter what you have, how much you have, who you are, where you live, who knows you and who you know.... we all face the same thing...
One day our flesh will die.
And when that day comes, how do you feel about simply letting the things you have on earth go? Or do you cling tightly to what is in your posession?
The Bible is quite clear when it comes to accumulation of things on this side of heaven... that placing your hope in them will only ever end in death. There is no hope in riches and wealth. There is no hope in fame or being well known. For this only ever leads to death. We know this, we know that things are fleeting and yet there are places where we all fall short of releasing their power over us.
But what I read in this Pslam is an interesting view on the posession of earthyl goods. We read that trusting in the accumulation of materials or titles makes them into a shepherd over our lives. But not like the Gpood Shepherd that we know Jesus to be, buut a shepherd that leads us into rocky and trecherous terrain. And it's easy to fall into the trap of following them, becasue we were made to follow, we were made to be addicted to something... but just like in the Scriptures where Jesus talks about having two masters.... You can't! You either love the one and hate the other or you hate the one and love the other.
And it's like that with accumulating for yourself on this side of heaven. In the end it will amount to nothing and yet out of pride and selfish intent, we still look to worldly goods and posession to fill a void in our lives that could only ever be filled by Jesus. We see that when we are not fixated on Him, we easily fall into fixation on other things.
But there is hope in this because it doesn't say that when you fall away form God and trust other things that you are stuck there forever, but we read that He will snatch us out of any bad paths we've walked ourselves down. But we need to lift up our arms for His help first.
This Psalm isn't to shame but to give hope. Hope that your search is real and valid, but it won't be found on this side of Heaven but rather in the one who runs the Heavens and the Earth. The only one who is faithful to fulfill our desires both here and at the end of time and beyond eternity is Jesus.
But following Him might look different. It might not be as comfortable. It might be less or more than what your flesh hopes for.... but what He has is eternal. It won't die on your dying day because it has roots in Heaven
This Psalm has hope because there's a turnaround point. There's a place to remove your attachment and fixation on what is not necessary and take hold of what is. There's a place to be done with accumulation and transfer to adoration. And theres space to be free from the exhausting need to have more.
It doesn’t mean we shouldn’t have stuff or we shouldn’t aim for higher ground - even King Solomon had all the riches in the world and a vast Kingdom. And there was nothing wrong with that - but the most important thing to remember is that He was the one who ‘had’ everything and yet proclaimed that everything was meaningless. There’s nothing wrong with things and with riches, but it can’t define you or your life, we've got to hold what we have or don't have loosely.
Does it change your identiy? Does it change how others view you? Does it affect how you treat others?
- Passage to focus on
"But God will redeem me from the realm of the dead;
he will surely take me to himself."
Psalm 49vs15 NIV
God isn't sitting up on high waiting for you to go wrong and then to laugh you off. He's waiting to rescue you!
- Image for today
This Psalm reminds me of the verses in the New Testament where Jesus tells us not to worry but to look at the flowers of the fields and the birds of the ari and remember that if they don't worry, neither should we Because our Father God looks after them, how much more will He look after us!
I know there are places in my life where I have shifted my gaze off of you and onto what's unecessary. Please forgive me for the times when I have forgotten that my life is meaningless if you are not at the centre. I repent of holding things or places or people closer than I have held you.
I pray that you will show me what it means in my life to let go of things and to hold onto you. Help me cultivate gratitude for everything you have given me but to hold you higher than any posession still.
Today and forever more.
- Active idea
Take a moment today and think about what you could bless someone else with. What do you have that could be a blessing to another person in your life. There's nothing that shows you how blessed you are than reaching out and blessing someone else! You can use the attached colouring sheet to think about this through.
Thank you for joining me today! Hope to see you again soon!
Have a blessed Lent
~ X ~