Day 195: July 14, 2014

Today's Reading(s)

Psalm 112
1 Hallelujah! Happy is the man who fears the Lord, taking great delight in His commands. 2 His descendants will be powerful in the land; the generation of the upright will be blessed. 3 Wealth and riches are in his house, and his righteousness endures forever. 4 Light shines in the darkness for the upright. He is gracious, compassionate, and righteous. 5 Good will come to a man who lends generously and conducts his business fairly. 6 He will never be shaken. The righteous man will be remembered forever. 7 He will not fear bad news; his heart is confident, trusting in the Lord. 8 His heart is assured; he will not fear. In the end he will look in triumph on his foes. 9 He distributes freely to the poor; his righteousness endures forever. His horn will be exalted in honor. 10 The wicked man will see it and be angry; he will gnash his teeth in despair. The desire of the wicked man will come to nothing.

Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture quotations are taken from the Holman Christian Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1999, 2000, 2002, 2003, 2009 by Holman Bible Publishers. Used by permission. Holman Christian Standard Bible®, Holman CSB®, and HCSB® are federally registered trademarks of Holman Bible Publishers.



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The Righteous Will Never Be Moved
by Adam Wheatley, Worship Minister, Brentwood Baptist, The Church at Avenue South

Be sure to view the new video this week.

As I opened my Bible to read through this passage, it was clear that Psalm 112 and I were old friends. Almost every line was underlined, cross-referenced, or somehow otherwise notated, but one verse seems to have garnered special attention from my Sharpie pen:

“He will not fear bad news; his heart is confident, trusting in the Lord.” (v. 7)

If I’m brutally honest, this verse probably stands out to me because I so rarely live up to it. Certainly, it’s human nature to want nothing bad to happen to us, but when (not if) it does, what is our response? My first response is usually one of attempting to gain control of the situation. When (not if) that doesn’t work, I’ll finally “take it to the Lord in prayer,” as the old hymn goes. Which sounds great, right?

Here’s the problem – for far too long my prayers in these types of situations weren’t prayers of confidence that God was listening and would act. Rather, they were prayers of merely (and meekly) hoping He was listening, and that maybe, just maybe, God would do something. For some of you that probably sounds childish. But for others, that might sound all too familiar.

The writer of Hebrews does us a great favor when he exhorts us to “approach the throne of grace with boldness, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us at the proper time.” (Hebrews 4:16)

And later in this book we are encouraged to remember that, “Therefore, we may boldly say, ‘The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid. What can man do to me?’” (Hebrews 13:6)
Remember this day that you are a child of the Living God. No really, think about that. You have access to the throne room of the Almighty King, and when you pray, the God of all creation is bending His ear to hear what you, His beloved child, is asking.

I am reminded of the confidence of David as he wrote the words in Psalm 3:

“But You, Lord, are a shield around me, my glory, and the One who lifts up my head. I cry aloud to the Lord, and He answers me from His holy mountain.” (Psalm 3:1)

May David’s words be our own today.

Earlier I referenced the hymn, “What A Friend We Have In Jesus.” That may have come to my mind because earlier in the day I quoted a few lines of that song to my wife. (Just so you don’t get the wrong idea, we don’t normally go around our house randomly quoting hymns.) Nonetheless, the lyrics to that hymn provide a perfect complement to Psalm 112. I encourage you to read these words out loud (or even sing them, if you like) and let the Spirit speak truth to you through them.

What a friend we have in Jesus,
All our sins and griefs to bear!
What a privilege to carry
Everything to God in prayer!

Oh, what peace we often forfeit,
Oh, what needless pain we bear,
All because we do not carry
Everything to God in prayer/p>

Have we trials and temptations?
Is there sorrow anywhere?
We should never be discouraged;
Take it to the Lord in prayer.

Can we find a friend so faithful
Who will all our sorrows share?
Jesus knows our every weakness
Take it to the Lord in prayer.

Praxis

  1. What is your first reaction when bad things come about in your life?
  2. When you pray, are you approaching the throne of grace confidently or hesitantly?
  3. Ask God today (and every day) to give you the confidence and boldness that comes with being His child. 

About JourneyOn Today

Today's devotional series accompanies the Spiritual Practices Foundations Curriculum which deals with 24 different spiritual disciplines. We will break for an Advent series in December and continue the second half of Spiritual Practices during the first quarter of 2015.