“Thou art good, and doest good; teach me thy statutes.” Psalms 119:68
The psalmist has realized in the previous verse that affliction has brought him back to where he needs to be and now, in verse 68, instead of blaming God, he praises Him. He has the right attitude. His hunger for more of God is seen in this verse as well. I like that. I like seeing that he didn’t become a turncoat and run. He shifted his gaze upward and glorified God.
I know the Bible teaches us to take heed lest we fall, (ICor 10:12) but I don’t think that should deter us from praising God and glorifying Him no matter what is going on in our lives. Those who would point a finger and brand us as fanatics or goody goodies as we thank God for what He has done, are just wounded in some fashion and strike out because of their pain. We shouldn’t let their pain dictate to us and we shouldn’t let our fear of failure dictate to us, we should just praise God anytime, anywhere and under any circumstance.
He is worthy.
The psalmist looked at the pain and affliction and said, “God, you are still good”. I want to be like that, don’t you? To wipe the tears from my eyes while the burden presses down and praise God with my rough voice as I wait for Him to teach me what it is He wants me to learn.
Recently I was at a restaurant with my family and I noticed an older gentleman with a WW II / KOREA VET ball cap on his head. I constantly search for those caps because I know that generation is almost gone and I like to thank them and shake their hands. I know that I have my freedom and a good life because they fought for this country before I was even born.
Well, I walked up to this soldier and placed my hand on his shoulder and asked him where he served. He told me he was in the Air Force and I saw that same twinkle in his eye that I see in a lot of men who served our country. It is like they step back for a moment and are young once more. I shook his hand and thanked him for fighting in BOTH wars for me. He smiled and gave me one of those firm handshakes that said, “I’d do it all over again.”
As I told he and his wife to have a nice evening, his wife asked me, “How did you know he was in the war?” I pointed to his cap.
That ball cap told me the man wearing it had been through something. It told me that he had survived the battles.
When you and I praise God and talk of His goodness, it is like we are wearing a cap in honor of Him. Others will see and others will want to know about it. The psalmist went through all his affliction and trials and heartaches thousands of years ago, yet his praise still rings true today and we take heart! We are stirred to think on God’s goodness because one man a long time ago decided to ask God to teach him more and told God He was good.
Don’t let your voice of praise die out or be muffled by the trial of your faith. I know it is hard to find the will to praise in the presence of pain, but try it anyway. Listen, my children probably think I am crazy, but I pray and praise outloud in the car or in my house when I am in the midst of something hard. I want even the demons hiding in the shadows to run as I stake claim for the LORD in my house and my life. The pain is teaching me something and I would rather learn while I am praising God than to be miserable and bring Him shame.
I have watched my mom and dad live this way my ENTIRE life. I am repeating it because they showed me that a life lived for God is worth it. Just like the psalmist gives us an example, just like that War Veteran gives us an example, just like my parents gave me an example. WE ARE THE EXAMPLE for someone else. Shall we drop the ball now? NO!
Stop right now and tell God: “God, You are Good. God, You do Good. Teach me more.” Praise Him and keep waging the battle.
Until Next Time, Lord willing,