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From the Preacher’s Pen…

Last week we looked at a song/prayer of David as he struggled with the consequences of sin. While that struggle is common to all honest Christians, it is probably not (at least it should not be) a frequent problem.

In contrast, most of us struggle regularly with questions about God, where He is, and if He is really in control. It is intriguing to me that so many claim to have never had such struggles. It seems we are ashamed to admit that we are weak and imperfect especially when everyone else pretends to be so strong.

The reality is that God’s word is filled with examples of REAL saints that truly love the Lord and yet have these struggles. If we would find God’s strength to deal with them, we must first admit that we all share in this weakness.

Consider the example David sets for us in…

Psalm 13

Paul reminded the Corinthian Christians that No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it (1 Corinthians 10:13). We can fool ourselves into believing that the common temptations, trials, and struggles are just unimportant, minor sins that are hardly worth mentioning or we can learn from the heroes of faith that actually penned the inspired words of Scripture that these are the serious challenges of faith that real saints really have to deal with.

Consider one of David’s many prayers for help with the faith-challenging struggles of real life for a real person that honestly loved the Lord and yet often found himself a failure.

For the choir director. A Psalm of David.

1 How long, O Lord? Will You forget me forever? How long will You hide Your face from me?

2 How long shall I take counsel in my soul, having sorrow in my heart all the day? How long will my enemy be exalted over me?

3 Consider and answer me, O Lord my God; enlighten my eyes, or I will sleep the sleep of death, 4 And my enemy will say, “I have overcome him,” And my adversaries will rejoice when I am shaken.

5 But I have trusted in Your lovingkindness; My heart shall rejoice in Your salvation.

6 I will sing to the Lord, Because He has dealt bountifully with me.

If you never faced times of despair and desperation, then you need to check carefully. It may well be that Satan is not attacking you because he already fully owns you. Satan’s attacks are against those who love the Lord. Satan’s desire is to make you feel forgotten and cause you to miss the true joy that belongs to God’s people.

Of all the lessons we desperately need to remember at times like this, it is the fact that obedient trust (faith) in the Lord is ALWAYS rewarded by God! And without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him (Hebrews 11:6).

Faithfully serve the Lord this week! Praise Him with joyful song! Rejoice in His salvation for He has and always will richly bless us in Christ!

— Lester P. Bagley