Sometimes, life is really hard.
You may feel hurt, disappointed, and empty.
You may feel numb.
Whatever the reason, there comes a point when you need to hear once again a word of hope.
I love Psalm 73. In fact, it may be one of my favorite Psalms. The Psalm speaks of a person who says that his “feet had almost slipped.” He became so discouraged after seeing the unfairness and pain that exists in the world. He saw the “prosperity of the wicked” (73:3). It seemed as if they had no struggles, burdens or the common human ills (73:4-5). They were a prideful and arrogant people (73:6-8). The world was not working right and it was very discouraging to this writer. He felt as if his faith was all for nothing (73:13)
However all of this changed later and he came away from the sanctuary very encouraged.
In what ways does God give us encouragement during some very difficult times?
- God gives us security. “Yet I am always with you; you hold me by my right hand.” (73:23) God is greater than your insecurities. In fact, God living in you can give you real security even when the circumstances you are in feel very threatening.
- God gives us guidance. “You guide me with your counsel…” (73:24) It is not up to you to figure out how to navigate life. You and I can have God’s guidance and direction.
- God gives us destiny. “…and afterward you will take me into glory.” (73:24) The resurrection story reminds us that no matter how discouraging life may be at the moment, ultimately our destiny is good.
- God gives us strength. “My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.” (73:26) You and I have a strength that only God provides.
If you know as you read these words that you need reassurance today, I want to encourage you to claim these four promises. In fact, you might pray thanking God for each one of these gifts. Know that God is for you. Know that you will never face any problem that is larger than his willingness and his ability to help you. Rest assured that no matter how large your problem is, God is faithful and will give you security, guidance, and strength. Know too that we are a people of destiny. This is good news.