I have found, as I am sure many of you have, that there are certain passages in God’s word that just speak directly to my heart. Here is one that I committed to memory many years ago and has blessed me through the years.
23 Nevertheless I am continually with You;
You have taken hold of my right hand.
24 With Your counsel You will guide me,
And afterward receive me to glory.
25 Whom have I in heaven but You?
And besides You, I desire nothing on earth.
26 My flesh and my heart may fail,
But God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.
Psalm 73 was written by an OT priest named Asaph. In this psalm Asaph was troubled by the prosperity, arrogance, seemingly carefree lives of the wicked while he went through the trials and tribulations of life that he observed did not happen to the wicked. He really wondered if it was worth it to live for God!
Then in verses 16-19 he says:
16 When I pondered to understand this,
It was troublesome in my sight
17 Until I came into the sanctuary of God;
Then I perceived their end.
18 Surely You set them in slippery places;
You cast them down to destruction.
19 How they are destroyed in a moment!
They are utterly swept away by sudden terrors!
When Asaph considered life from an eternal perspective his thinking changed and he wrote verses 23-26.
A few thoughts for consideration on verses 23-26:
Jesus has taken hold of me and He will never let go. That’s security and that’s accountability. He is always with me, He knows everything I do and think about. He bought me and He owns me. I am reminded that I belong to Jesus.
In spite of how confused my thinking can become, how quickly I can forget to think Biblically, how quickly I can become focused on temporal “stuff” rather than the eternal, God does not quit on me. Jesus said in John 10:27-29:
27 My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me; 28 and I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand. 29 My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand.
As I go through life I have access to the King for wisdom and guidance and then He will take me home forever. There is the reality of the “here and now.” I live in it. You live in it. It is important. As Walt has said, “I get to participate with God as He prepares me to spend eternity with Him.” The choice is mine. The consequences are forever.
This verse is very comforting and convicting at the same time. Jesus did it all! He died on the cross for me. He alone is my way to Heaven. I am forever thankful that Jesus is my advocate interceding on my behalf to the Father. (Hebrews 7:23-25).
At the same time, I am convicted of my need to confess and repent of my running after the things of this world. There are too many days that I want Jesus and (insert anything) and not enough days where I can say I want Jesus and Jesus only, that nothing else matters.
I know by experience that my flesh and my heart fail in this life. There are times when I lose my zeal for God. Relying on my own strength to live a life that pleases God does not work! Jesus alone provides the strength I need to follow Him each day.
As I get older I am more aware that the day when my flesh and my heart WILL fail is rapidly approaching. BUT, God is all I need forever. Security again!
Grace and Peace