Forgotten by God?

Wednesday, October 12, 2016, 3:00 a.m. – The Lord Jesus put in mind the song “For Our Nation.” Speak, Lord, your words to my heart. I read Psalm 42 (NASB).

My Soul Thirsts (vv. 1-2)

As the deer pants for the water brooks,
So my soul pants for You, O God.
My soul thirsts for God, for the living God;
When shall I come and appear before God?

How many of us truly pant for God? How many of us eagerly desire his presence with us, and long (ache, crave) to meet with him each day? How many of us thirst for God like we do a cold glass of water when our throat is parched? If we don’t yearn for our Lord in this way, why not? If we do, what brought us to that place? Sadly, when things are going well for us, we may not desire our Lord in this way, but it may take some hardship or some type of adversity in our lives to truly get us to hunger for God like we hunger to have our bellies filled, or like we long for our comfort and our sleep.

My Tears (vv. 3-4)

My tears have been my food day and night,
While they say to me all day long, “Where is your God?”
These things I remember and I pour out my soul within me.
For I used to go along with the throng and lead them in procession to the house of God,
With the voice of joy and thanksgiving, a multitude keeping festival.

If our tears are our food day and night, then we are definitely going through trials of some kind. I am presently going through a difficult one – something I had not faced ever before, so I empathize with the psalmist. Yet, the Lord has been encouraging me greatly. He has been putting hymns and scriptural songs in my head to encourage me, such as “He Giveth More Grace.” And, he reminded me of what Job said: “Shall we accept good from God, and not trouble?” (Job 2:10). You know, God never promised us that we would not go through tough times. In fact, he promised us that we would if we are his followers, and that we would share in the sufferings of Christ. Paul said that these come so that we might learn to rely on God and not on ourselves.

Somehow, especially in America, I think, we have gotten the notion that, if we believe in Jesus, that all should go well with us all the time, and that we should never have to suffer. There must be a lot of people who believe this. Otherwise, why would so many people, when suffering, blame God and assume that God is somehow falling down on the job because we are not immediately relieved of our difficulties. That is why people would say, “Where is your God?” because they assume God is somehow AWOL if he allows his servants to go through hard times. But, God didn’t say we wouldn’t have to suffer. He said we would, but that he would be with us in our trials, that he will strengthen us, and that he will see us through.

Do you remember what Joseph said about his suffering? He said, “As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good in order to bring about this present result, to preserve many people alive” (Gen. 50:20). Satan means to harm us, because he wants us to stop doing the work of the Lord, but God allows suffering in our lives for our good and for the salvation of human souls. So, when we have seeming hindrances to our walks of faith, or to Christian ministry, we should not let that discourage us. We shouldn’t stop doing what God has called us to do unless God closes the door. And, we should not allow Satan to rob us of our joy, either. Our joy should not be based on our circumstances, but on the giver of joy, our Lord Jesus!

Hope in God (vv. 5-8)

Why are you in despair, O my soul?
And why have you become disturbed within me?
Hope in God, for I shall again praise Him
For the help of His presence.
O my God, my soul is in despair within me;
Therefore I remember You from the land of the Jordan
And the peaks of Hermon, from Mount Mizar.
Deep calls to deep at the sound of Your waterfalls;
All Your breakers and Your waves have rolled over me.
The Lord will command His lovingkindness in the daytime;
And His song will be with me in the night,
A prayer to the God of my life.

So, what is the remedy for despair? Hope in God. So, how does that work exactly? For one, when we are in despair it is because we are believing Satan’s lies and we are not fully trusting in what is truth. We may feel that we got a raw deal, or that we were tricked in some way, if what we have been taught is that being a Christian means we will be happy all the time and that we won’t have to suffer, or that God would never allow or bring suffering into our lives. So, we have to put off those lies, and put on and accept the truth. Our joy can’t be relative to our circumstances, but has to be based in our Lord, and in who he is, and in what he has done for us in saving our souls, and for giving us new lives in Christ Jesus, our Lord.

I remember here the old hymn, “It is Well with my Soul.” If you have not ever done so, you should look up the history to that song, and what took place in the poet’s life just prior to him penning those words. His soul was not well because all was going well for him, but because of God’s grace in his life, and because he was trusting in God despite his circumstances.

Where is Your God? (vv. 9-11)

I will say to God my rock, “Why have You forgotten me?
Why do I go mourning because of the oppression of the enemy?”
As a shattering of my bones, my adversaries revile me,
While they say to me all day long, “Where is your God?”
Why are you in despair, O my soul?
And why have you become disturbed within me?
Hope in God, for I shall yet praise Him,
The help of my countenance and my God.

God’s love for us is also not based on our circumstances. Just because we are going through hard times does not mean God has forgotten us. In fact, it may be to the contrary. It may be that he sees we need some divine discipline and/or correction in our lives to get us back on track, because we have become lazy or complacent about our walks of faith and our service for him. Or, it may be that he sees we need to mature in a certain area of our lives or that we need to develop perseverance and godly character, or he may be preparing us for a specific ministry in which we will have to suffer for his name, and so he is getting us ready in advance. So, never assume that just because you don’t get immediate relief from suffering that God is AWOL.

Also, don’t assume, if things are going well in your life, that you have the blessings of God. There are many wicked people who appear to be very successful in this life, and who seem to have no troubles. Do you remember the words of Jeremiah, the prophet of God? He said, “Righteous are You, O LORD, that I would plead my case with You; Indeed, I would discuss matters of justice with You: Why has the way of the wicked prospered? Why are all those who deal in treachery at ease?” (Jer. 12:1). God’s response to him was: “If you have run with footmen and they have tired you out, Then how can you compete with horses? If you fall down in a land of peace, How will you do in the thicket of the Jordan?” (Jer. 12:5). The lesson is this: If we get so easily discouraged in a time of peace, then how will we manage when things get much worse, which they will? (See: Rev. 13, for example).

If we are at all paying attention to what is going on in the world, and in the USA, if that is where we live, we have to see the signs of the times in which we now live, and we have to realize that we are living in perilous times, as was prophesied in the Old and New Testaments. The beast is rising. Nations are being taken down and conquered. Christians are being severely persecuted throughout the globe, and the false prophet is hard at work at deceiving the minds of naïve people.

Many of our leaders are leading us to join in solidarity with them in joining hands with all the people of this world in unity, so that we might live together as one family, regardless of religion or lifestyle. They are leading the world toward a one-world government and a one-world religion, and things are heating up pretty quickly. So, if we can’t survive what trials we have now, we won’t survive when things get much worse, so we need to put our hope in God, regardless of our circumstances, and allow ourselves to be joyful because of who he is and because of his love for us in saving us.

For Our Nation / An Original Work / September 11, 2012

Bombs are bursting. Night is falling.
Jesus Christ is gently calling
You to follow Him in all ways.
Trust Him with your life today.
Make Him your Lord and your Savior.
Turn from your sin. Follow Jesus.
He will forgive you of your sin;
Cleanse your heart, made new within.

Men betraying: Our trust fraying.
On our knees to God we’re praying,
Seeking God to give us answers
That are only found in Him.
God is sovereign over all things.
Nothing from His mind escaping.
He has all things under His command,
And will work all for good.

Jesus Christ is gently calling
You to follow Him in all ways.

Men deceiving: we’re believing
In our Lord, and interceding
For our nation and its people
To obey their God today.
He is our hope for our future.
For our wounds He offers suture.
He is all we need for this life.
Trust Him with your life today.

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