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Showing posts from February 17, 2019

FRET Conscious

Are you a fretter? The dictionary defines “fret” as “to worry,” “be vexed,” and my personal favorite, "to wear away by gnawing.” It is a picture of living in the present tense and letting circumstances and people get to you. The psalmist said, “Don't worry about the wicked or envy those who do wrong.” (Psalm 37:1) Being fearful of or envious of evil persons gnaws away at our hearts and focuses all our attention on the immediate. It affects the attention we can give to God because we are flooded with fretting. Illustrations are given to further explain how quickly what we are focused on will disappear when it says, "For like grass, they soon fade away. Like spring flowers, they soon wither."(37:2) Later the psalmist says not to "worry about evil people who prosper or fret about their wicked schemes." (37:7b) Here there seems to be an “irritation” with their success by us. And once more it says that fretting leads “only to evil,” (37:8). FRET can be made into a…

Discipline's End

Just a year after our son, Andrew, was born, we were living in a rental home preparing to move to Portland, Oregon. Andrew was a curious one-year old and one afternoon when Debi was preparing dinner, he wandered into the kitchen and over to the trash can. As his little hand reached out to touch and get into the trash, Debi said, "NO!" That made him move away for a moment but something, whether smell or color, drew him back again. This time he was a second ahead of his mother and going for the junk. She saw him and slapped his hand. It brought a surprise to his face and a little murmur to his lips and a new lesson was learned. Don't mess with the trash! I know all this because I was videotaping him at the time…still have that scene preserved for future use. That incident always reminds me of my own struggle with sin. It seems I get caught in the act by God and He says, "NO!" But I go back. He ends up slapping my hand. It hurts for a while but often I return and t…

The Godly

Previously we have share the saga of the wicked as revealed in Psalm 36. Now we view the position of the godly as explained in Psalm 37. These two peoples, the wicked and the godly, are like the sheep and the goats Jesus talked about. The sheep are drawn close to him, the goats are sent away into eternal fire. Their thoughts, actions and final ending places are at opposite ends of the spectrum. They are the difference between trusting in the Lord and rebelling against Him. Let's see what the psalmist says about the godly: ·"Better to be godly and have little than to be evil and rich." (vs. 16) ·"The Lord takes care of the godly." (vs. 17) ·"The godly are generous givers." (vs. 21) ·"The Lord directs the steps of the godly." (vs. 23) ·"I have never seen the godly abandoned or their children begging for bread." (vs.25) ·"The godly always give generous loans to others, and their children are a blessing." (vs. 26) ·"The Lord…wi…

The Wicked

How will you know wickedness when it rises up around you? We are a long way from knowing righteousness today. The words and activities that are now normal seem reasonable but that's because our standards are adjusted. Ethics and morality are challenged and a liberal interpretation of all actions now rules. We would call that situational ethics because what's right and wrong is determined by the subjective context where the action took place. Give all who believe this a large piece of baloney which is usually made up of the afterthoughts of the meat industry including organs, trimmings, end pieces and more. It is fake meat illustrative of the fake ethics and morality. However, God allowed the curtain of wickedness to be pulled back for the psalmist in Psalm 36. He saw the heart of the person given over to it. Here is what he discerned about the wicked: ·Sin abides deep in the heart of them. It "whispers" to them, convincing them of their way. It is their counselor, teac…

Fundamental Truths

There is some information that is the foundational to much other. For instance the truth about gravity is basic to understanding how we can live on the "side of the earth" and yet still be living on a flat surface. The truth about gravity informs a body of other information underneath it. In a similar way, there are fundamental truths to God, His integrity, planning, and viewpoint towards all of us here on planet Earth that informs a body of knowledge below it. The psalmist, writing under the inspiration of the Spirit of God, has addressed many issues and fundamental truths. He is not living at a time of extensive knowledge and ease of finding out things through the internet but still is able to capture several fundamental truths concerning God. Here are a few: ·The Lord's words are true and He is trustworthy. "For the word of the Lord holds true, and we can trust everything He does (Psalm 33:4)." God does not lie therefore we can trust what He says in the Bible …