Friday, October 30, 2015

Psalm 118: Give Thanks to the Lord, for He is Good!

We've had a rainy autumn so far in Georgia, but there have been some really beautiful days mixed in. I like fall in Georgia. The colors are not spectacular (hey, I moved here from New Hampshire, where the colors ARE spectacular) but the subdued reds, oranges and browns combine with cooler temperatures to create a really enjoyable season... and so I can say, like Paul: "I have learned, in whatsoever state (Georgia or New Hampshire? [Sorry!]) I am, therewith to be content."
I am thankful to have had the blessing of returning to New Hampshire for a couple of weeks this year. While I was there I heard Pastor Nick Manha (at Household of Faith in Amherst) preach about contentment. He said something like this, "We become an enemy to what God wants to do when we grumble and are discontent... Complaining creates confusion."  
That helps to explain why it is so hard to find our way when we are not happy with where we are. One the other hand, and I love this phrase- I've got it on little sticky notes all over the place- "Praise promotes contentment."
We have this treasure in jars of clay (II Corinthians 4). What? God made His light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ-  I have to read that again- He makes His light shine in our hearts- your heart, my heart. My heart? My feeble, prone-to-sin, deceitful-above-all-else heart? Yes! 
Why?
To show that this all-surpassing power is from God (not from us), he deposits this treasure in human vessels, knowing full well that we are DUST... jars of clay. 
"Give thanks to the Lord, for He is GOOD; His love endures forever."
When I remember that, I am content to be where I am... waiting on God, knowing that I can't even see to the next bend in the road, much less what might be beyond that bend. I wonder about it. I have ideas- but I don't know what is next. So I will wait, but while I am waiting, I will praise him for his goodness, his mercy and his love. And I will be content!

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